The mist cold and thick, I had the high beams switched off
so the brilliance wouldn’t channel in and blind me—
the switchback roads wind through the woods past
houses built by people with wagons drawn along
by beasts with four legs just like you still have.
It was close. I would say you came out of nowhere
but that’s a lie. You came out of the woods, your home.
These woods have been home to baby deer long before
I came and will be long after I break free these surly bonds.
I can say with certitude that I was driving carefully tonight.
When your eyes and fur came before me I did the thing—
I slammed on my brakes. The road lit bright red in back
of my car, a German number. It handles well in stress
like beasts with four legs just like you still have.
Inches from your shell-shocked little face,
I stopped. Your mother came after you, rearing
as I would have. Her life with us here must be difﬁcult,
all her nights most likely fraught by ancestral memories
of wolf packs hunting her herd. She might be a single mom.
Dena Rash Guzman is a Las Vegas born poet and essayist. She now lives in a river gorge outside Portland, OR and is the founder of Lusted Road Honey Co. & Humblebee Pollinator Conservatory. She is the author of Life Cycle—Poems, Dog On A Chain Press 2013. www.denarashguzman.com