• from the 1986 Sage student literary magazine •

 

The Swimming Lesson

Kangaroo mouse he likes swimming

in rain pools.

He learned this one late summer

afternoon in a mossy pool,

below rust colored cliffs

speckled with flowers.

A beautiful woman startled him

into the water (and he could

swim!)

When she lay her clothes on

his nest.

 

Paisano Pass

Its mountains refuse to

let go their green.

The rock formations

hold flowers against

their scarlet breasts

enticing barbary sheep

(brown, white, black)

to caress their skin.

Hundreds of blackbirds

circling between

red rock and blue sky.

Watching contented sheep

float up cliff rocks

with flowers

in their mouths.