Odocoileus hemionus

Mule deer

Paul Mirocha



Through the pathless, shining night

I know you're out there walking.

You turn your head from left to right

through a flowerless land

in the amber light

where even the stones are talking.


Your toes on the ground hardly made a sound.

Your approach was without warning.

I found your scat lying on the ground

among the many things I found

beneath my window on that morning.


I go to bed hungry and thirst for the rains.

You chew on the stem, the thorn, and the leaf.

I dream of the blood that flows in your veins.

And took your picture with my phone.

You were facing away

standing alone

at the edge of the world,

as far as is known.

I wake with the taste of dust in my teeth.




Paul Mirocha has been a professional illustrator for over 25 years, illustrating over 20 books, most of them science picture books for kids. Nature continues to be his main subject and inspiration. Paul is currently working as artist in residence on Tumamoc Hill in Tucson at the old Desert Laboratory. Mule deer also reside there.