I used to wake early and watch the sheep lift their heads in fear.
Once, a wild dog took shape out of the wood-frost,
slicking its blue tongue, its coat itself a polluted ice,
then hard lunge, gloss of rent muscle, red rash inwound
on the boneyard, no sound, everything disfigured
in mist, everything with its skeleton mask on.
I thought the sheep were meant for hunger, the way
our hunger is meant to become its own guide to call to.
This mist, here, years after, devolves into a mouthful of wool.
I used to want to witness loss, to have my shoeprint in the sheep’s
blood be a seal to mark the act as closed. But it is not necessary.
The proof is obliterated by darkening shifts of grass.
I used to wake early and watch a blurred face that came
to be mine flare up in the mirror. Now, in the fallen night,
I can see what is not meant for hunger—throb of stars,
your cool, unwashed skin: trademarks of what rises.