I flew last spring to Denver
to hold my daughter whose first lover
had just left her. In the fields,
one afternoon, we walked and searched.
It had snowed, a thin bright cover:
the sun brushed the field with sparks;
like small signposts, prairie dogs
stared and chattered.
At the side of the path I found a stone,
left behind on this alluvial plain.
It was hard, opaque, speckled
like a bird’s egg, quartz and granite.
I don’t know why I wished to hold it in my hand.
I picked it up; it was rough under my fingers.
High in a bare tree, a bald eagle watched
for prairie dogs, still against the bright sky.
The stone fills the hollow of my palm as I hold it:
a remnant: hard, ancient, obdurate.