The book of prairie is broad with stories
and platters of bottom land, bald eagles
in the cottonwoods waiting for another day
to fly. This is how we know a winter front
approaches and what we want
is to climb the plateau’s cliffs before the snow
arrives, which we’ll do in four-wheel low,
on a barely discernible path
at mile marker nine, to reach the briar bushes
and game trails, the vista and the fields
combined and tilled impossibly within six feet of the brink.
Up there we’ll almost hear the happy times
of an abandoned homestead a thousand feet below,
music from the femur of a cave bear. We’ll see forever
and yet the town we came from won’t be visible.
It’ll still be a hundred years away.