Strangers at Twilight

David Huddle Click to read more...

david-huddle-sofest-2016David Huddle is from Ivanhoe, Virginia, and he taught at the University of Vermont for 38 years. His fiction, poetry, and essays have appeared in The American Scholar, Esquire, The New Yorker, Harper’s, Shenandoah, and Green Mountains Review. In 2012 his novel Nothing Can Make Me Do This won the Library of Virginia Award for Fiction, and his collection Black Snake at the Family Reunion won the 2013 Pen New England Award for Poetry. His most recent books are Dream Sender, a poetry collection published in 2015 by LSU Press, and a novel, My Immaculate Assassin, published in September 2016 by Tupelo Press.

Huddle – Strangers at Twilight

 The black mare with the white diamond lets me
bump foreheads with her across the fence,
Then we’re at a loss.  I was lonely the whole
afternoon.  All day her girl didn’t come

 to ride.  In this field big enough for a dozen,
she’s the single horse.  I tell her she’s pretty.
She lightly sniffs my new shirt.  That’s it–we’re
at the end of what can transpire between an old man

 and a young horse who’ve just met.  I say goodbye,
wave as I would to my sister if I had one, then
walk down my side of the fence line.  She waits
a long moment, then trots, catches up, and will

 pass me except that sixty-eight years old I know
from third grade a race when I’m in one, by golly
I’m with her five strides, seven, ten!  Then, well —
I let her win.  She and I both know what’s right.

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Discussion

One Response to Strangers at Twilight

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