A Different Kind of Sweetness
by Katherine Hoerth Katherine Hoerth

Katherine Hoerth is the author of a poetry collection, The Garden Uprooted (Slough Press, 2012). Her work has been included in journals such as Borderlands: Texas Poetry Review, BorderSenses, and Front Porch. She teaches literature and creative writing at the University of Texas Pan American and serves as Assistant Poetry Editor of Fifth Wednesday Journal.

You think he'll let me hold a bunny, dad?

I ask while walking through the fields, my hand
in his. With silent puffs of breath I count
our boot prints, each one stippling fresh snow.
The barn is just ahead—its faded wood
splinters underneath the weight of snow,
of wind, of icicles and passing time.

My neighbor stands outside. I slip my hand
free, run ahead—mind filled with floppy ears,
warm weight of cottontails in my arms.
He greets me with a nod and doesn't ask
the reason why I'd walk a mile, to pluck
a rabbit like a crocus from a field.

I stop dead in my tracks. The cold air hits
my face.
                  You like that huh?

                                                he asks. I stare
enchanted by a whole new kind of magic—
a doe is laid out at his feet, atop
a mound of blushing snow. Her eyelashes
are elegant in stillness, thick and black.
But it's her throat that has me mesmerized;

the knife's clean slit, a portal to the world
of pomegranates, red and glistening,
split open in the sun. I lick my lips
to taste a different kind of sweetness there.

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