The Journey

On the Way at Forty-nine


Already climbed
Most of the barren mountain
The top
To the north
Four miles
Enough light
Coming down
A coyote
Steady trotting right this way on the twisting ridge
Twenty feet
My fear gave a warning
It didn't stop or slow
The thick wild-animal hair stood out
High ears light eyes
Without concern
I didn't leave the trail but looked
It looked back came on
Gliding past my right side a foot away and gone
Impeccable rules in this place
With one trail

Building the Gate, Photo by Judith Ray
Building the Gate, Photo by Judith Ray


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