It Is the Horse

Martha Rhodes

It is the horse in her he fears,

her eyes, large and rolling,

the yellow crunch of her molars,

and her heavy foot aimed at him.

He hears her in the stall of night

approach, the other animals scatter,

as does the dry dirt of the path,

and the pebbles at his feet

as he moves aside, as if to invite her

to enter into the event horizon itself.

He sees all her parts stretch out,

a string speeding forward yet still,

next to him, suspended in the cessation

of time, the galloping fury of her finally

arrested so that now his sleep markedly

quiets enough for the shift of his breathing

to stir her. She licks his salty spine —

he is calm, now — pats his damp mane,

Wake little horsey.

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