The Mountain Goat

The Mountain Goat
Sure footed in her climb to loftier mountain heights
where few others were able to reach,
she moved with skilful ease
enjoying every challenge of daring crag
and dizzying, dangerous ledge.
She kept her balance even in the most difficult extremes
of rocky, treacherous situations—
making courageous leaps
on hooves flexible in their experienced understanding
and agile in response to life’s continual dangers.
Born to the aggressive muscularity
of mountain goat temperament,
she was a female much desired by males
of her tough and weathered breed—
males confident and secure
in their own proven strengths upon the heights.
They respected her dominance in their presence—
respect hard-earned when her stiletto horns
boldly argued their points through the tough skins
of many a rump and many a cheek.
She challenged even the much-imagined
goat devil-god of myth so many kid-like adults feared
and slavishly empowered
with their tradition-bound superstitions.
She’d butt that false idol into oblivion
whenever others threw its conjured image in her way.
This was a lesser obstacle
than the ferocious beasts below—
the adversaries of flesh and blood
who sought to corner and pounce.
Even in most vulnerable position
and hopelessly outnumbered,
she used the power of her horns and hooves—
somehow managing to survive
to the season of another rut.
She’d surrender her guard only for a moment,
by Nature’s decree,
to a courting male who’d instinctively crawl
on his belly with tender whispers to gain her favour.
It was a ritual of her species that she just accepted.
Then she’d zealously protect her kids,
teaching them gradually how to cope
with the harsh realities of their environment.
She encouraged free and independent thinking,
showing them creative transcending of limitations
with caution and regard for safety in their gambols
through the high and dangerous passes.
She was a domineering female
in control of her chosen steps.
No matter what, she’d find her way—
determined and decisive in every step.
No mere weak-minded, docile creature of other species,
she was ever questioning all aspects of her existence.
How she loved the rugged, untamed beauty
of the rocky mountain heights!
March, 1992 revised May, 2004

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