Skookum–the relentless, powerful, strong
August heat wave that
My mother loved,
Looming over The County Fair.
In hometown Monte, it rained maybe
Every single week of the year.
Especially when preparing my horse for
The Big Event.
Skookum. Because the vice grip heat made
Competition arena would be dust clouds not mud.
My mom would tan while
Cheering me on.
So skookum that
My horse, wilted and damp,
Would question my cues.
Sweat poured from my cowboy hat
Skookum, the sun that
Crisped and blistered my ears, gave me a
Rosy skin bracelet between
Gloves and long sleeves.
Skookum melting away into drowsy evenings.
Horse munching hay after cool hose down.
Me tank top and shorts.
Me with my blue ribbon.