Plainsmen

The farmers I talked to at the table.
They don’t need poetry, these men.
They know pain, spring’s slashed veins
laid bare upon their fields, each one known
by them, like the backs of their hands.
And that beauty rusts itself into the machine,
trailed above by gulls, there to clear away
each animal the blade chews for them.
At dusk, the 900 pound heifer that wandered out
onto 6 was killed by a truck carrying 28 bales of hay,
and strewn on the road, looked like rocks
rolled back down again from the sun.

Waterford, ON, 2/4/27

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