Hymn for the Colt
Weighed a casing in my hand, I learned to love
the gun, my protector. Or my captor.
My father gifting it to me, all that
thunder, all that which makes a man a man
to fear, a judge, an arbiter of justice.
Said my father: not like that. Here’s how
you hold it. With every shot I closed
my eyes & after kept it always
unloaded. But never loved enough
the power he said it gave.
Said the horse trainer: it’s not
the rough stuff that works so I worked
at growing softer. Later, held the pistol
like a hurt bird, perhaps a swallow, not
like my father taught me as a man might do:
with a firm grip. From the Czech “to whistle”
it could be a burner, a hole punch, Miss
Spray ‘N Pray. It could be a heater, hip-rider,
holster tied around my thigh. Or nine,
slug chucker, gat. But I felt more
for the fillies the summer I saddle-broke colts
at the ranch for spare cash. Again, the trainer:
don’t think it breaking but acclimating.
I weighed a casing in my hand & waited.