Black widow, rattlesnake:
isn’t it sweet how they warn us?
The coral snake choosing the order
of his stripes to make a warning rhyme.
The rabid raccoon, frothy and thirsty,
unafraid of the big dogs, showing us he’s mad.
The cottonmouth around the cottonwood
in the meandering river, mostly absence.
On a vine-colored balcony, we spelled
out peregrine falcon, three accents.
Don’t the stars teach us how not to reach
the cars in pecking order below the third floor?
The costumes and make-up we think we choose
when we hike a long way into the sky.
On a mountain stronghold, gravity holds
the bronze horse in its stance of war.
The light shifts, a weaker phase, and leaves shake
down amid squares and circles as I search.
A joyful fall, now that it’s mid-term, rummaging
for seeds, but I am getting burned in the sun.
Robin Scofield is the author of Flow, which was named Southwest Book of the Year by the Border Regional Library Association, and Sunflower Cantos as well as a chapbook, And the Ass Saw the Angel. Her poems have appeared in The Paris Review, Western Humanities Review, The Texas Observer, Theology Today, Pilgrimage, Cimarron Review, and The Warwick Review. She has poems appearing in West Texas Literary Review, Ponder Review, and The Ocotillo Review. She writes with the Tumblewords project and lives in El Paso, Texas, with her husband and her Belgian Shepherd dog, Winston.