Deserts change costumes
in their seasonal dance while
earth spins around sun.
Fall, in its style, quietly awaits
winter’s brisk winds and rains . . .
they sometimes come suddenly
on dark cloudy days; snows blankets
surrounding peaks; showers send
churning waters roaring down canyons,
the flood spills across dry sandy beds,
earth’s thirst drinking the gift
that brings life back to life,
awakens seeds and ancient roots
that slept patiently, sometimes years
for the magic signal of late
rains to turn the spring desert floor
into glory, a story of cycles
only mother nature knows how to tell.
And as spring goes, summer
opens its arms to blazing sun,
colors soften to sandy tones
and stones, heated like ovens,
dominate a landscape, whose cholla,
once plump with spring’s bounty,
now skinny and golden-spined,
cluster between gangly ocotillos,
their small red flowers defying
the challenge of dry sand and . . .
fall edges across afternoon shadows,
quietly waiting for winter’s return.
And so it goes, year after year,
watched or not by human eyes
who only see moments of
the story unfold. Her age never told
as costumes change. The desert,
the character, never gives up her stage.