A blaze of gold more than red in early evening light, you strode slow through snow- dusted new grass skirting a low hill behind the house. Then black ears pointed up, you sensed my presence on the porch and turned your sleek head, sharp nose, toward me quick- flashing black bead eyes.
How you lit up the dull afternoon with your confidence and bravado
and in that moment gave me a grim hint of your intent before you trod soundless to the forest edge where the lesser creatures live.
Bright hunter— what more do I have to fear or desire?
At day’s end along the dusty path I saw them, pale-pink votives glowing in the gravelly stone on the brown bank up from the clamoring river.
They were evening primroses sprung from gray-green, leathery leaves unfolding their silken petals, opening up to bright stamen centers. They were the only blooming in that dark place.
I believe there are people like that, too, who cling to what’s in this world such as the poor person who offers the stranger bread or a song.
Beth Paulson lives in southwestern Colorado where she leads the Poetica Workshop and co-directs the Open Bard Literary Series. Her poems have been nominated for four Pushcart Prizes and her fifth collection is Immensity (Kelsay Books, 2016).