It’s an unforgiving plain, the desert,
Where the arena is bounded by
Impassive mountains a dry green
Soured to acidic black.
The saguaros stretch towards
The sky, streaked with clouds
And bearing down on loose dirt,
Like old arthritic fingers
Frozen in mid-flowering.
The brush grows low and minute,
Gnarled by continual effort,
Deprivation—progress rolls slow
In the desert, it encompasses lives,
And is measured in epochs.
The brush gathers in labyrinthine clusters,
And sits and stares at the ever-arcing sun
As buzzards circle overhead
In uncertain rhythms,
Searching for the deceased,
Or the ever-dying.