I laid corn out for the deer today. I put the blue and white, 50 pound bag of cracked corn in the orange wheel barrow and pushed it over the narrow paths Allan had made in the deep snow. What pleasure. The sun warm in a cloudless deep blue February sky. So warm I sat down on the bag before zipping it open and pouring the yellow maize onto the white canvas of snow at the edge of the woods.

It was so silent, only welcome sounds of crow and woodpecker and the distant muffled snuffling of goats riffling through hay for the green, for the green. Goat barn secured, deer food poured, I turned to the next chore. Put the empty bag into the wheelbarrow, then, all plan aborted, laid down in it. Oh heaven. Warm sun, orange barrow, purple parka, pink hat, one leg dangling, one propped on the handle. Oh bliss.

Trees sparkling in the noon light, black crows cutting through indigo sky. I longed for one to land on me, cock a glittery obsidian eye into mine, gift me with that pure black glistening presence. Count me as her own. Or for the muscular and elegant deer to come to the corn while I lay there, so close, so close.

Sometimes at dusk, when I go to bed the goats for the night, the deer are feeding in the corn. We stare at each other, they, assessing danger, I beauty. Often, one stamps her foot territorially. I stand my ground, thinking, yes, whose ground is it? Whose? I try to make peace. I lower my head. I speak softly an incantation of offering across worlds. Most often, they accept.

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