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Desert Love - A Poem


I’ve been kissing trees, lately,

Arms embracing cottonwood girth,

Thick, ruddy bark rough on my lips.


Old man tree’s too old for me,

Roots like boa constrictors grope for river,

Surviving desert infinity.


But comfort he gives, as I cling to him

And gratitude I return

For his presence in this vast canyon.


The rocks are less congenial

Craggy and cold

Grotesque in their shapes.

You speak of old?


65 million years, this Navajo stone

That towers like skyscrapers

The color of bone.

Formations cascade like curtains, in folds of gray

That brush the canyon floor

Though even in the billowing wind, inert they stay.

Nonetheless, I cozy up to the hulking monster

Take a seat in his lap

Dangle my legs over the river

Rest my cheek on his chest

Listen for a hear beat, mine

And the whoosh of the wind

Brings the scent of pine

Ponderosa pheromone.

Craning my neck, I find a spot

Purse my lips, give them a lick

Then plant my kiss on his stony face

My pucker leaves a mark that evaporates without a trace.

But the rock knows, and so do I,

I’m smitten in love with this rock in the sky.

Or am I just desperate in the desert

In my solitude?

As I tromp through the sand I sing aloud

Finding, losing, finding my voice again

Practicing in nature to nurture my heart again.

Alas, tonight I’ll dine with a man,

Not a rock or tree or dazzling chunk of petrified wood

Nor a river or bird or sky,

But a human

And I’m filled with glee.


Like old man tree, though, he's too old for me.


I will not kiss his bristly cheek

Certainly not curl up in his fleshy lap

But out of my desert loneliness I shall crawl

To converse, not just sing to the wind,

Joyful to drink and eat

The warmth of human

Being.

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