THE BEAUTIFUL SENTENCE
In some direction terminal of grace
the blind lamb, the calf (three-eyed, two-eared, one-
tongued), both doomed, nuzzling for milk; or the colt
foaled broke-leg from the birthing chain, and the mare
dead anyway – cold hell: this is that place
where mercy’s known by its withholding, known
by its pure absence: hawk, a shrieking bolt
from the clear sky, fierce cloud, the quick hare
shattered; how even the pronghorns will pace
a strange male up the fence line, one by one
running a murderous relay, sharp jolt
against barbed wire, the hazy autumn air
pink foam bubbling from its muzzle, burst heart
a drum coyotes answer – soft red alert.
B.J. Buckley is a Wyoming/Montana poet and writer who has worked in Arts-in-Schools and Communities programs throughout the West and Midwest for over 40 years. She is currently writer-in-residence for Sanford Arts at Sanford Cancer Center and Sanford Elder Care Center in South Dakota. She also teaches multi-media and paper arts for special needs adults and senior citizens at Paris Gibson Square Museum of Art in Great Falls, Montana. Her poems have appeared widely in small journals, and she has received a number of national prizes and awards for her work. Her poetry books include Moonhorses and the Red Bull, with co-author Dawn Senior-Trask (Prong Horn Press 2005); a letterpress chapbook, Spaces Both Infinite and Eternal (Limberlost Press 2013); and Corvidae, Poems about Ravens, Crows, and Magpies (Lummox Press 2014).