To Waste The Time

March 28, 2017


I was leaning against the stone
in the cool morning
before the sun began
her bright blinding gaze

Took up my pen
and tried to speak
to the paper again
in the quiet

I wrote of the sand
and the pretty, pretty birds
that circled and spun
all round the feathery brush

And the stone was cool
in the fresh of dawn
the words came slow
as I watched everything

I suppose it is fine
to waste the time
feeding the soul
with waiting and pause

So I lingered with the earth
in repose with the stone
made friends with birds
and got nothing done

except this.

Lost In Gila Bend

March 12, 2017


The tiny desert town
sprawled in the thorns
sand silently crept

Gila Bend
held me over an open flame
at just past noon
for a tank of gas
and a cool spot
before I turned back to the road

what do they do
in the middle of nothing
here in nowhere?

I looked round
but couldn’t see a thing
but shimmer-haze
and a dust-devil

The cool spot
had just two beers
and the floor was sticky
with both

It was hard to choose
Corona or the house brew
should’ve had the first
the other was the same stuff
just two weeks stale
maybe left over from the last keg

but I figure
that was all part
of the ambiance

in a world where one bar
is good if it has two beers
and there’s nothing else
but a tank of gas
and the road.

Set Me Down

October 26, 2016



Drove this road
A thousand times
And never stopped
But I wanted to stop
Wanted to drop
My boot heel
In the dust right here

Where everything else
Is a hundred miles away

From that greasy joint
At the side of the road
Where they take your last buck
Just cause they got you
Just cause the Flyin’ J
Is a hundred miles away
Up past the horizon’s mirage

Silver all a shimmer
That never lets you stay

I still want to give ’em
My only last dollar
For a dusty tin cup
Of black coffee
A bit of leaf for my briar
And watch the rest fly right by there
A hundred miles from anywhere

As they look for somethin’
I already found along my way

Left my heart in the dust
On a ribbon of a road to nowhere
You’ll still find my shadow there
Back broken, knees bent
Bent as my soul
That fell seven years ago
Into a cool well at a secret spring

Under a crooked cross on a holy dune
A million miles away

Look in my hands
See this dust
Take my bones
These lonely bones
And cover them up
With this

Don’t play me a dirge
Let the heat waves shimmer-dance
On my bones
On these sticks and groans
Just let the wind fiddle
A lonely tune round the cholla
On my bones

On these lonely bones
Just let the desert play

There’s a burnt ravine
Tween Hatch
And the brass of the Tucson sky
Out in the saddle-sore gulches
And wind-beaten scrub so dry
When I get too old
Take me on that long road

Till I can’t walk no more
Then set me down

On a hot rock
Under the old creosote
With the lizards and cicadas
The sun burnin’ my jeans up
My lips chapped, crinkled as a crone
As these crows’ feet in a squint
Let me taste that coppery dust

One last time let me just
Breathe it into these bones

Let my last sight be
A dust devil dancin’
Those darned quail a-skitterin’
And the mourning doves
Up on the lines above
Serenadin’ me
In peace while I lay

In the grit of a forgotten wash
A hundred miles away

At high noon
When the sun is blazin’
Burnin’ up the long long sands
Put my sweet girls in my hands
Put your cool kiss on my cheek
Don’t cry, I wanted it this way
And leave me here to stay

So far from anywhere.
A hundred miles away

Originally posted June 5, 2010