Did you hear the horse thunder and taste the dust
in your cabin? The wild hooves kicked up a storm
last night. The hours passed as I reread your letter,
licked the envelope flap you sealed, traced your name,
and wondered if you were reading my poems.
Nothing fills this pit except your words—
cursive and hurried across the yellowed page.
In a parallel universe we’re on a ranch,
on horseback, gathering cows, fencing
the earth, as if we could control the wild. As if
the shelter we built to weather the storms will
withstand such winds and hail. Perhaps
you wear a cowboy hat and are open
to my embrace and my kiss. Perhaps there’s
no other place but here with the dust and mist.
Flames beyond the curtains were all that
reflected in your eyes that last night. The day
before the horses stopped their trot and the water
dried up due to drought. Are these hoofprints
left on my doorstep the only souvenirs? Are the letters
scattered around the cabin all that’s left? What
else can I do but sit in the burnt pasture and wait?
Cat Dixon is the author of the forthcoming poetry collection What Happens in Nebraska (Stephen F. Austin University Press, 2022) along with five other chapbooks and collections. She is a poetry editor with The Good Life Review and an adjunct instructor at the University of Nebraska, Omaha. Find out more at her website: www.catdix.com.