Dusk at the Arroyo

The dogleg in the road
skirted the high school.
Yesterday’s rain reflected
in the arroyo alongside the road.
The loping gait of coyote
on the periphery caught our eye.
The car at standstill now,
the coyote ambled to the arroyo;
then lowered its head to drink,
the outline of its face and muzzle
perfectly mirrored in still water.
We too wanted to drink in the silence,
but when my passenger side window rattled,
the coyote, already schooled
in the ways of man, startled.
Stepping back, the coyote
angled its head quizzically at us,
then loped along,
disappearing from our view.
Dusk approached now
as silent as coyote’s footfall,
low angled rays of setting sun lending
their glowing many-colored mane
to the arroyo’s still waters.

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