Salt Ice


by Cindy Droege

Aloof winter, reserved for the cold
fingertip. The brushed-over idea
that fades when the skin becomes numb.
I lean my body into the long thick neck—
between the two tight against the trough
of oats where the wind is a frail hum.
This early, the metal pail is a flat
note against the paddock floor—
easy girls, easy… an uttered prayer
to ease the extraction of matted mane.
A higher sun dulls the patina
of each hedge linked to a barbed
fence. Either way, the gates will swing
open and the brackish blocks, carved
with tongue to the shape of a bowl, hold
eddas of Odin. The Belgians, harnessed,
plough through settled snow. Bridle and bit recess
the fable in the eyes. When the ears lay back,
they know, by the mouth of the river, the wolf remains.

-refers from the word patina in Andrea Beltran’s poem Poetry I’m Not Liking

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