I dig my pitchfork
into a wall of fermented grass,
harvested in May, for November.
Immune to its sulphurous gases,
I throw clumps into a feeding trough,
watch cattle lower their heads.
The wind is still for once,
and the only sound
is bovine chewing,
the swishing of mud-caked tails.
Nelly, too old for the mart
or butcher’s knife
stops mid-munch, raises her head.
Her brown eyes beckon me
to lay down my fork,
and give thanks
for surviving October.
Her breath, a cloud of translucent white,
rises towards a rare blue sky.
A breeze, not of this earth,