Snow

In front, the snow is a clean white page, waiting for the words to be written.
Behind, a story of a man afoot begins to unfold.
The springer quarters ahead and when I cross her track I stop to look at the prints pressed into the powder, marred around the edges when her warm furry foot pulled at the edges of the cotton-candy snow.
I move on to clean snow, a new page.
Rooster tracks emerge from the sage, their edges sharp and intact as they race along a parallel story line to intersect with the quartering tracks of a springer.
I look up from the page and quicken my pace.
Dog, snow flying, shaking sage, a whir, a cackle, a long tail streams out behind mad wing beats.
A gun shot, a shout, a retrieve, an ending.
A crimson and blue bird lies on pure white snow, a single drop of blood colors the snow near a jumble of tracks from man and beast.
I pick up the bird and we move forward.
Behind, a story written in snow.
In front, a clean white page.
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