Published in The Harvard Review
Sheriff Singh bowls his orange lifesaver
Across the millponds tin-hued ice. This
Is practice. His turban glows like crocus.
A remote-controlled blue heron scuds
From the scrub pines and lands in a splinter
Of frozen cattails. I take my hands
From their pink mittens and tom-tom
My face. Out of respect for the whitetail
The North Brothers keep a mannequin
(Above my head) in their deer blind tower.
She wears a red wig. Let down your hair.
Pull me to you and well pursue happiness.
A call oozes from the cruisers radio:
A fender-bender near the living Nativity.
Singh pulls his doughnut to shore and drives
For town. Who will save me? The heron
Scoops the air. Does someone see and hear
Through birds? Can fish detect my heat?
The sun is a wedge of withered lemon.
My fingers fall numb. I hold my breath.