Small and medium stones border
devotedly placed objects around the yard,
alters of significance for someones I've not met.
What inspires us to choose particular totems;
displaying, summoning, illuminating, particularly
I chose four stones on my hike yesterday–
descendants of an ancient war between earth and fire,
propelled fragments of land to sky;
and gravity, being what it is lodged pieces atop one another.
Precariously balanced they are,
convincingly un-budging (until another quake wreaks havoc).
I returned to his Rancho and
positioned my new stones in the yard
pointing toward center
and fanning outward toward possibility:
Why this passion of mine
for picking up rocks, placing them into my pocket,
arranging them in orderly patterns?
Symbols of an innate knowledge,
amalgam of recognition and prediction?
I found another object today:
a guitar pick (an alter contribution
blown away, landing half-buried in the sand?)
It had my initial on one side, a skull and crossbones on the other.
I asked him if I could keep it and he said yes.
He knows where it came from and I don’t care.
It was left for me
Like the bird spoke
Like your song played
Like the sunset
Like the ever-fading smell on your clothes I still wear
Like the tears that leave me dry.
Deserts are good for that.
©2016 Gretta Harley