Thank you thread Inquiry for publishing my poetry and photography in April!

  • April, 2018

    Wolf at Beowowe Rest Area



    The almost life within me stretches out

    a cairn atop my tender pubic bones 

    that burn and part, anticipating birth

    as I speed through alkaline painted land


    homeward bound, eager to shed the lonely 

    void of starlit sagebrush pocking the land 

    connecting Elko and Battle Mountain.

    Until my bladder clenches and demands


    diversion into the rest area

    perched dim upon desolate camouflage 

    skirted in asphalt and sequined with a

    flash of luminescence flickering like


    aluminized vapor in my headlights

    where I see her perched upon rangy-legs,

    motley colored head turning toward me

    as if aware of my hesitation.


    I sit five thousand years seeking sanction

    in her stare and soothing the raised flesh

    peppering my neck and arms. In due course

    I edge from the coupé with riotous pulse


    a curious advance on liquid legs

    and nearing her I can map each fine hair

    illuminated by hovering light

    I see her breath rise opaque in crisp air.


    Fixed regal and undaunted this totem

    inspects me through eyes like ancient mirrors 

    flecked and cracked pale behind inky iris,

    nostrils splaying open as her head lifts.


    Crablike I sidle into the doorway

    and to the last stall where I cry soft tears 

    then fish-gasp for air. I exit because

    we had no cell phones then, only moxie.


    I place one foot in front of the other

    with measured care. The heat from her body

    warms my back as she follows me, clicking

    syncopated to my breathing 


    At the car I think to inhale deeply

    then whooshing whispers of the opened door

    surge forth and batter the hushed evening

    while I slide my extended body in.


    Near the hood she tilts her head, curious

    the crickets take up their chirping tempo

    and the scent of sage and cedar wafts in.

    I close the door with intentional care.


    She strolls on delicate paws that lift then set

    sinuously causing her entire length

    to ripple with controlled power until

    she is standing tall enough to meet me 


    face to face magnificent wolf, mother-in-making.


         Published, thread Literary Inquiry Vol. 12








    Leaving Blackfoot at Sundown Copyright Michele True

    In Celebration of Survival


    My childhood chicken-legs filled out: copper

    freckles endure, reminders of summers

    ridden wild, barefoot. Toes gripping knobby

    bike pedals, pumping fast to avoid a

    fall. Gravel roads, jagged and sharp, threatened

    to catch me, care for me, to leave their scars.

    Then, I left riding behind and dreamed of

    escape, careful to stuff esteem next to my 

    socks and fear of being stuck in Blackfoot.

    Locked away but coiled, poised to spring open

    with keys made of streamers—white and streaking

    my stomach with medals of honor pinned

    in a Gaia battle, and in the wide

    startled stare of newborn eyes connecting

    with something instinctive within. For years

    I crept out of Blackfoot and into authenticity.

    Sweeping all roads of gravel for my sons,

    watching for scars, before patriarchy

    aimed its fist at my face and missed, hitting

    the wall instead--leaving a hole that I

    refused to patch. Reaching into a drawer

    I found what I needed coiled and poised

    between lace ankle socks and old photos.

    And now. Oh! Now, I Am.

    Mother, lover, gypsy, writer.

    No longer feral—or maybe just enough

    to shake things up at cocktail parties.

     

        Published, thread, Literary Inquiry Vol. 12

    On Facing Hurricanes and Mortality

    On Facing Hurricanes and Mortality

    Storm shutters have been hung and so I wait.

    Vulnerability is mustard gas 

    rolling in as I hunker where hours ago

    geckos ran and squirrels flicked their tails 

    chattering under a tourist-brochure 

    sky now gray as the shadow’s fringe.

    There is time to call my son, time to gauge

    how deep his anger remains--how fast this

    maternalistic guilt begins to choke 

    us both. Voicemail comes to the rescue, and

    I light a cigarette, the one hidden

    in the rusty tin behind the sugar

    I place heirloom Staffordshire dogs in the 

    dishwasher for safekeeping, then exhale.


         Published, thread, Literary Inquiry Vol. 12

    2016

      


    An American Tradition

      

      

    Pocatello guards the gateway

    to verdant plains

    tight between mountains’ shadows where

    frothing waters

    snake through purple camas blanket.


    Did this chief stand proud upon the bluff

    scrying futures?

    Headdress connecting cloud to earth

        in premonition

    of loathsome deeds and subjugation


    Shoshone herded, stripped of home,

    a valley laid open and crossed with iron tracks,

    vulnerable to those who devour

    language and culture

    stealing regalia.  A headdress


    for the Chamber of Commerce to

    don and parade

    each Fourth of July, down Main Street

    throwing candy

    to the children lining the street


    waving their fathers’ lessons.

    Thank you Outrageous Fortune for publishing "An American Tradition."