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Anne Walsh Donnelly





Fodder, by Anne Walsh Donnelly

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,
whispers.

This poem is from the collection Odd as F*ck, by Anne Walsh Donnelly, Fly on the Wall Press, 2021

Eastwood