Unwanted Favors: What’s the Affirmative Response to “No”?

Last month, we were in Texas and I’m still thinking about a near-altercation between two dog owners. I was one of them. And since I’m still thinking about it, I will exorcise it the only way I know. Here goes: Mister Dog and I had been driving all day. We finally got the Rollin’ Rancho … Read more

Poetry Out Loud: Horse. Woman.

This blog will get back to some sort of new “normal” soon. What a year, huh? For now, just a note to say how grateful I am for your time here with us. I so appreciate you. Thre is a new book out and this is an audio version of the title poem, Horse. Woman.  … Read more

Book Release: Horse. Woman.

Book Release! Available Now! Horse. Woman. Poems from Our Lives “It was a tough life if you was useless.” -Leafa Numbers Blake My grandmother proudly claimed she had delivered more foals and calves than any woman in early 1900s North Dakota. Like her, we’ve found a purpose building our lives, sometimes elbow deep in dirt … Read more

Photo & Poem: Weather Change

Hail blown sideways by the wind, dark clouds churning across the horizon, as the horses brace against the stinging ice pellets, their noses tucked tight to their chests, running for shelter. A stark reminder on this hot summer day, torn leaves stripped to the ground, intermingled with ice, standing water everywhere, that seasons so long … Read more

Photo & Poem: Forever Now

Walking past the mare, I let my hand follow the shape of her body, her hair so short it has no texture in the height of summer. My fingers slip under her mane first, and remembering the full moon on night she was born, watching with the rest of the herd as her dam gave … Read more

Photo & Poem: Her Place

A stick pony to start, with a wooden head and twine for a mane. The tiny girl stomped unevenly, imagining hooves at the end of her pudgy legs, her mother’s back turned, hurrying dinner for the men. Later a spring horse that the girl could climb on all by herself, jumping hard up-and-down, the toy’s … Read more

Photo & Poem: Words

“You’re not wearing that, are you?” Voicing her anxiety first, was my blouse revealing something more than unconventional taste? Welcoming me back after a long absence, “I suppose that’s real,” she moaned at my unnatural hair, her frown lingering down to my sandals. She repeated her lifelong fear that people would think I didn’t have … Read more

Photo & Poem: Sunset to Dark

Talking with her while I walk the farm, I say look what you’ve done with the new grass. Earth sends a breeze to finger the dandelion fluff balls, a few seeds released. I wonder if she’s forgotten the elm tree, twigs barren of leaves so late in the spring. The growling sound of the four-wheeler … Read more

Photo & Poem: Slap Hands

Sit next to Jack, she said. Mother’s youngest brother on leave from the Army at our kitchen table. He pinched me hello and continued his story, laughing too loud at his own jokes. The center of attention with a can of beer and a full ashtray. Oily-skin handsome, Jack goaded me into the game, his … Read more

Photo & Poem: Soundness

Centering myself behind the horse as he walks away, bent forward with my hands on my knees, staring his hips for unevenness. Listening to his footfalls. Knowing he isn’t quite right, I follow a few steps behind. He’s off but it doesn’t show every stride. The gelding knows I’m watching and the awareness changes his … Read more