Deborah Elliott Deutschman

LOOKING FOR BUFFALO in albany, New York


In the newspaper the other day: arctic scientists
Searching for extinct buffalo
"Sometimes," my parents say, "people do things
That have nothing to do with us."
Buffalo prints & bones

I try to tell them
The wilderness substance of wind & snow
That what I'm doing is searching for extinct buffalo
Scientific formulas & clues

"You'll laugh at this someday," my father says
"Meanwhile," my mother adds, "there will be repercussions."
The scenery blurs
The artic winter omnivorous ghost in the form
Of a storm swipes my compass
Magnifying glass two way radio
Down on my hands & knees searching for extinct buffalo
"What are you going to do?" they ask
"The rest of your life like this?"

In the newspaper: prints & bones
Formulas & clues
"Sometimes, " I say, "people do things..."
They try to tell me
Substance of wind & snow
"You'll laugh, Meanwhile," I add, "repercussions."
Down on their hands & Knees
"What are you going to do?" I ask

The blurred white wilderness
Down on our hands & Knees
Distinct echoes: herds of buffalos


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