This land is made of our bodies:
the cracked hip curve
of the mesa, the twigs—bare
fingers—rise
from the clay, clutch
our legs
in scorched plumes,
formidable fire. What lies

beneath the blanket,
rests on the desert floor—
draws a newly muted choir
to bow heads,
exchange gazes?

Our quorum cannot form
the words. Before us
the highway: Route 66
a bitter tune. We pretend
our eyes
do not betray us.
In black & white,
they move. In the arid twist
of dust & brush,
they move. From the blanket
to the sky, & back again. The eyes,
always the eyes.

I can tell you
what’s beneath the cover,
but I wish
I was never scarred.
Let’s just say
this is something weighed down
in a thick wave, something a hot wind
can’t turn. Let’s just say
you’re better off having seen
nothing, and I wish
your eyes
were mine.

****

Photo By Elmar Ersch (Own work) [CC-BY-SA-3.0 (www.creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)], via Wikimedia Commons.