The Crossing Guard
Mother watched from the window
as I approached the asphalt river-
road of black highway where only
once in a while cars sped freely
drivers lulled by bucolic views
farms nestled in sage-covered hills.
My dog Buck at my side, I saw
a car coming but thought, oh well
not fast enough to get me.
I was five years old and I could run
but Buck refused to cross, hung back.
I stepped onto the asphalt anyway.
Arrre, arre, he barked. Arre arre,
his head thrusting from side to side.
As the roaring faded, the road
once more a black river, my friend
scampered to race me across.
Mother is sure he saved my life that day
the car so close and now so far away.