Wednesday, April 27, 2011

W is for

Wool - early memories of

Sheep Drive

The Bye boys were movoing their sheep
Home to winter pasture or out to summer range
down the road past our house they flowed like dirty foam,
a bleating river of stupidity, rushing like rapids between the fences
eddying in the gateway, muddying the cold bright air
with their smell of wet wool, and their frantic, foolish cries.
Four thousand little hooves thundered on the asphalt.  The Bye boys
on their horses yelled.  I yelled.  Our hounds yelled.
the sheepdogs, fiercely silent, with eyes like amber flames,
with watersnake suppleness and speed, drove the idiot animals,
danced and chivvied, chased, commanded
outwitted, outran the canniest old ewes.
The flood of sheep poured past and away
in a nimbus of dust and ruckus,
leaving a sense of passage
and a road scummed with dung.


  1. I could see it and sense it in every way. You created a wonderful word image here.

    Tossing It Out

  2. Great stuff, Roxie. I especially like the watersnake suppleness and speed, and the road scummed with dung.

  3. This is a wonderful poem! I am a fiber artist and great lover of wool, but not so much of sheep. ;) Love the language, love the images.