for Maxine Kumin
The mare rears, she has almost thrown her rider.
It’s the thaw, it’s the scent of spring,
The animals know it before we do.
While we still shiver and worry ourselves over aging,
In the sickroom, the patient begins to heal.
Inside here, the windows are steaming up
But a path runs through the woods,
Half dirty snow, half mud
With the stones sticking through
And the snapped branches lying across, the ones
That were ready to die
And gave themselves to the wind.
Friend, it’s a day for a walk.
Are we going to walk it?
Alicia Ostriker No Heaven (University of Pittsburgh Press ©2005)