by Catherine Chandler

By January he begins to spot
the whitetail, lying still along the shoulder
of Pennsylvania’s roads. As days grow colder,
winter gives the trucker food for thought.
He rolls by, shakes his head as if to say,
Dumb animals, continues on his run
to Scranton, barrels down Route 81,
where loaded semis claim the right-of-way.
He wonders at the annual mistake,
this wandering from woods and hills, and whether,
despairing of alder, tamarack and heather,
a starveling doe, this snowy night, will break
into the clearing, freeze in the headlights’ glare,
pay for desire with blood and bones and hair.