10-thous-dollar-bill? no?-will-ya-give-me-9? who’ll-
give-me-9? no-now-8-who’ll-give-me-8?-no? 7?
                people!    think of what y’all’re bidding on.
f i v e acres on god’s green earth. take time, walk ‘round.

time to walk around, with knot in stomach, fear i’d fail
at this exploration project. upset at raspy-voiced
woman who’d handed me a number. just wanted to be
on an email list. i fanned with #0391 that warm
april day. 2003. gazed down a slope to a sinkhole.
laughed. a sinkhole? not what city-me had dreamt of,
but nearby, a wide-trunked oak, glorious-buds, rested.
and our daughter’d wished, saved five years for a horse.
a throat cleared. oh, yeah, the spouse had dragged along.
he knew auctioning had never been research
for me. a bird flew close– red belly full. neighbor
cattle bellowed. the sun grew brighter. a white steeple
glowed over next hill. deer leapt by. really? oh, yes.

now two decades later i close my eyes. still see preteen
girl swing from oak branch, her loyal horse grazing
in paddock nearby. she smiles. laughs. i open my eyes
to girl-now-woman swing with babe in lap. Lacie neighs.
2 smiles. no, will-ya-make-it-3?-who’ll-give-me-3?