< meta charset="UTF-8"> Haibun Today: A Haibun & Tanka Prose Journal
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A Quarterly Journal
Jeffrey Woodward, Founder & Owner
Ray Rasmussen, General Editor

Volume 13, Number 4, December 2019
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Tish Davis
Concord Township, Ohio, USA


Riding Bareback

1.

BANG CAPS
cowboys hiding
behind the hedgerow
the giveaway scent
from a rapidly fired red roll

BANG CAPS
in rolls for repeating
pistols—
the white gate
swings open

We chase our boy cousins. They run back to the house and upstairs to their room. After threading a bedspread through the rail of the top bunk, they drop behind the lookout and keep their cap guns low. We Indian girls, wearing real feather headbands handmade by our aunt, reload behind a closet door.

2.

Where we live now, the beds don’t bunk. At Grandmother’s house, NO GUNS ALLOWED.

redirecting the moon
that black stallion
on her polished table
raising itself up
on its hind legs

The hands on the mantle clock are not yet in their morning place; even the feathers in our headbands must be still.

pinching the blinds—
only a moth
near
the yellow bare bulb
over her back porch

My sister and I take turns running our fingertips along our secret strip of red caps. Behind what shadowed hill is the villain hiding? Under whose side of the bed? On what kind of horse will our hero show?


Author’s Note: first published in Skylark (Issue 5.1), Summer 2017.  

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