Biking Eight Miles East of Loveland

A northern harrier drops
from telephone cross pole as I ride under
Dawdles low over dry cover,
corn stalks with tumbleweeds
With off balance ease up to another pole
Never seen it dive

A family, I guess
a realtor and family in new blue Dodge pickup
Man rubs forehead cap in hand
looking over tract 4
Sign says for sale 35 acres
farm land zoned residential

West of me lit against dark foothills
in low afternoon sun a gusty wind gets a column of dirt spinning
up in the bare prairie
And on east horizon
towers of smoke lean where
farmers burn off fields

Riding these dirt roads like 13
these squares out east
Not as flat as they seem beside the Front Range

The last western light glances off Big Thompson Canyon

And into the wind
like naked Blake mouth agape howling up spiral incline
running an eternal one-way ticket,
while driving home from work
last week on route 34 the last eight mile stretch from Loveland
basketball sized rocks across road, car off road
zero visibility from these dry fields lifting up and blowing over road
this late winter

Out here with all
this space and email you know nothing
to really see the wind by,
just the tumbleweeds and trash, Bud Light cans
mostly collecting in ditches along roads

Kids come at night to drink,
easy driving around these big squares, I know
Alone with friends
and the stars no closer to each other
than we are to them
But these old signposts
fixed at night out here so permanent still for now

Two big shaggy coyotes pass through this morning
the german shorthair out back barking nuts to get at them, the feral pair
stop to gawk, sniff a prairie dog hole
and gawk again before swaggering toward
the one stand of trees a few hundred yards away

I believe that northern harrier nests in there
flies from pole to pole over all of this,
these bare winter fields full of rodents and new homes

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