Ode to the Cow 

I've feared the head with horns
digging into flesh
the tail whipping back and forth
slapping anything nearby
like words that hurt, stultify.

I cannot answer what it means
she is black, white, brown
the color of mankind, 
her body has an udder
that brings me nourishment.
The food she eats brings forth
waste that pollutes the river 
or fertilizes the field

-- Dorothy Holley


Dorothy Holley lives in Squirrel Hill. Her fourth book, Dream Quartet, in which this poem appears, was just released by FootHills Press. Her poems have apeared in the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, Sacred Journey, City Paper, St. Anthony Messenger, Voices from the Attic and Along These Rivers. A book-launch will be held at Calvary Episcopal Church, in Shadyside, at 2 p.m. Sat., Oct. 24.



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