What manner of man is summoned
by this shattering light
by these gaunt square miles
beckoning to the outcast moon?
Who do the gulches — red wash split silt gaps
in the sandstone monoliths —
cause to cry
to cry out shout in dry lightning
in the lengthening groundrays
of open dawn?
What manner of woman is cushioned
in dust hardness
sleeping between slow day sheets
clawing for each fragrant rain?
Who is she who listens to every apple’s growing
and holds the green
a velvet lullaby talking in her womb?
These are gothic pitchforks in each hand.
These are guns, carved arrows
barefoot steel and laughter
across the slow smiling winds.
People too full of sky and desert cactus
oases of small fulfillments.
They own these graves.