The snow's been messing with me for months, now:
chased me out of Scott County just after the holidays
and kept me out of it the night before Mom's surgery
(falling along the diagonal of I-81 in a perfect line).
It started falling during Grandma's party, yesterday,
and ran me out of Maryland, altogether, by nightfall.
You died, today, between snows. I guess it's warm
where you landed. I guess they gave your hat back
and your hair, your blue jeans and cowboy boots.
I know our horses were waiting just inside the gate
and that you're back in the saddle again (out where
a friend is a friend). I miss you so much, already.
And I know just what you would say, if you could:
"Don't worry about it," but I know, too, that I will:
that there's nowhere for these road-weary bones
to be but the place they lay you, pain-free, to rest.
The air's sharp and cold, and I can't help but wonder
if I'll get there on time, if I'll make it before the snow.
Rest in peace, Jason Hatfield. Bring them both and meet me at the gate.