After Wallace Stevens
The desert is painted
ocher, turquoise and white
in the right kind of light.
In the desert there are times
when the only sound
is hollow wind.
In the desert
the heat of day
vies for your allegiance
with the cold of night.
What you see in the desert
is sometimes a reflection
of what you believe.
What you believe in the desert
is sometimes what becomes real.
In the desert there are ghost flowers,
barren cousins to the blazing star.
You must follow the bees
to know the difference.
Flowers are surrounded by needles,
the desert protects its own.
There are reservations in the desert,
places where the mind can go
when pain is unbearable.
Though the desert is harsh,
sand makes a soft bed
perfect for bleaching bones.
Desert mistletoe is unarmed.
Its seeds are masters of deceit
sprouting where others dare not.
There is a valley of death in the desert.
The Old Woman Mountains
nurture life above the clouds.
In the desert you may not remember your name
but it can be fatal to forget what you are.
The silky flycatcher, glossy desert denizen,
reminds us the blackbird is everywhere.
After reading Thirteen Ways of Looking at a Blackbird by Wallace Stevens