Santa Fe

It seemed I stepped out of death
into brightness

It was two weeks since Daddy died
and in Indiana it was raining, raining,
and the brightest fall leaves you ever saw
kept falling and melting into the ground.

So I flew and I drove
into the desert
to Santa Fe

and in the city I saw
smiling skeletons playing guitars,
picking apples, going about their business.
And in the countryside I saw

a great crack in the earth
that ran a hundred miles up the high desert
to Taos, bigger than time and
bigger than sadness;

it was the Rio Grande

and I saw clouds that stayed all day,
big scoops of dreamlight floating
over the map of gold and red and orange time

and I had that old pain, for a minute,
who will be here with me?
whose hand can I grab, and who
can I tell?

and in that moment
the landscape was my companion,
knowing all I knew and

and the sun and the music of the place
went round and round

and daddy and I were there
together, and all the folks
I ever loved,
but most of all I was there, me,
a little body in all that vast,

and I didn't feel alone.

Severed Heads table of contents Brenda Laurel Tau Zero