Deer

Meeting her gaze –I want her to see
sisterhood — I want to say
“Look, I’m scared, too, I’m prey —
the shrapnel spinning slow-motion
in my chest — unravelling me”

but she sees the stone tipped spear
the bronze headed arrow, the
cross-bow bolt.

— Some slight

movement of mine, some twitch
sway breath — an explosion
— of movement

— she is gone

For Brendan at earthweal, where we are meeing nature’s gaze.

Deer – November Yeats 21

‘…by water among the trees
The delicate-stepping stag and his lady sigh’ —W.B. Yeats

 

The deer come down to the water

in ones and twos, stepping so lightly

they hardly bend the grass.

In the dappling light

their coats are leaf shadowed,

sun flecked. They look around,

always prey,

muscle shuddering under skin,

as if they could suddenly

dart away, a sideways

scrabble step flurry,

power in fear.