My back aches from sitting so still
on a cold chair, hidden
on a hay wagon , inside
a makeshift hut.
Time to think, time
to squirm, rub my hands
together. Time to
wait for the majestic buck I have seen
on a camera, at midnight. Six tall points, rise
to the sky like pinnacles. An enviable prize, yet
perhaps I will not pull the trigger should he come by.
He will not show in daylight, so why worry? Why stress
over an event that will not occur?
Evening comes gently, a shadow slowly creeping through
stands of trees. Shapes appear at the edge
of a far field. Four, then suddenly a few more, in groups, scattered yet
together. A herd, and the darkness grows and I cannot distinguish
except for size. Yearlings still play around mother’s feet. A large doe
leads the way, closer, slow and closer, the deer browse. I watch,
suspended and tense, and make no sound, and disguise any movement. I swing
a scoped barrel from doe to doe. I count twenty gentle creatures
without horns, who munch serenely on alfalfa. Spread out on the pasture
before me as if attending a party, talking in groups, enjoying the buffet.