Hand To Mouth

The white horse gathers other horses
at the gate to the pasture.

Their horse voices drift up the hill
to the apple tree where I sit back to trunk.

The dandelion puffs are too low
to feel the swish of the horses tails.

It is too early in the season
for the apple to be anything but sour.

The walk down the hill offers promise
to the waiting horses,

but proves a lie as my
open hand is empty.

The white horse nuzzles me
and I stroke her neck.

The others push and jostle.
Each wishes attention and something sweet.

I step away from the gate,
collect tall green grasses by the fistful

and deliver them to muzzles
with lips pulled into something like a smile—

the smell of steel from the recently removed bits
is pungent on their breath.

copyright © 2019 Kenneth P. Gurney

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