The door is frozen shut.
We pray for thaw. We pray
for sap, for anything green,
for the gauntbellied deer
who carefully, thoroughly,
remove each bud from each tree, we pray
for a wind that will warm us,
we pray for warmth.
turns my fingers useless. I fumble
tack after tack into the straw,
wield a hammer like the bludgeon
it is, strike my fingernails, the wood
everywhere but the target,
cursing the wind, the winter,
the chickens too stupid to stay in their pen,
the straw that spills out of my socks
every night, cursing the barn
and its thousand states of disrepair,
cursing the damn fool who thought
she wanted to be a farmer -
and the chicken still escapes
to lay eggs that freeze
in the hayloft.