I Had…

Collies, gold and white                          fist strikes

Running beside me                                 palms slap

As I explored                                             foot slams

Orchards of oranges and owls,           me against the floor

Beaver dams                                              hands rip

Abandoned in summer.                         heads off my dolls


Polished maple posts                             legs spread

Stretched sheer white lace                    forced apart

Over my head,                                          by arms wider

A walk-in closet                                      than my thighs

Held handcrafted horses,                     I can’t speak yet

Stuffed elephants and bears.               can’t say no


Chestnut horse,                                       nurses jab needles in wrists

Flaming in the sun,                               cold fingers bruise me

Neighs soaring in the wind,                asthma restrains me

Swift as a kite                                          muscles tear

To ride away                                            as I lunge

On.                                                             for air


Thank you to the editors of The Sonoma Mandala: Literary Review, Vol. 17 for first publishing this poem.

Assemblage horse by Dickens.