The Amon Line Poetry Award MISHA AND THE GRAVE

Fall 2014 / Issue 96

Aaron Ballance

Dug out the deep hole

with rock bars and shovels

along the shade tree path

while the herd was in lower

fields, and left the rifle in the truck

because people believed

horses know intentions,

and the ancient Paso Fino,

too sick for the molasses

we dripped on grain and in water,

came and stood over the grave

when it was still morning,

waited there past lunch,

like a blinking statue,

never swatting a fly,

never pawing the fill dirt

mounded above the hole

we had left open to sun

in case that warmth

touched him when he fell.