A Guide to Leather Glove Care

The hide once fit
some old cow
or steer far better
than it  fits my hands now,

but I’m grateful
for thick, bovine skin
as my father and I
set a line of fence-

posts down the horse pasture’s
edge. From each hole,
I scoop out a winter’s worth
of sodden earth; dank mud soaks

my gloves. When we finish,
the posts feel solid, ready
for fenceboards. In a careless
moment, I toss my dirty

gloves in a plastic bag-without
a cow’s heart, without
its breath–three weeks later–
stiff leather fuzzy with mold,

still damp.