Cibola 5

This entry is part 5 of 119 in the series Cibola


Beginnings (cont’d)

I’ve been to the desert southwest,
I know how it’s pictured, & I swear
this is that light. What so many
sun-starved souls travel the breadth
of the continent for: that blood-
drenched gold. While down below
in the shadow, all around me
the dooryard birds–Carolina
wren, white-throated sparrow,
cardinal, titmouse, chickadee, junco,
goldfinch & mourning dove–
are wagering every note they have.
The pileated woodpecker uses
the whole cove for a resonator,
a fast rattle of dice on the bone of
a locust. As the light spreads,
every bush & tree on the ridgeside
stands distinct, singing in the dawn wind.
I see roots from underground, shining
tips of feathers. The blue down here
is the color of an ordinary horizon,
a thinness, a spreading of rhizomes
under my skin–the globe-encircling
miles of veins–grown feathery
like the feelers of a night-flying moth.
I can hear what shrews
are up to in their tunnels
& the newborn bears in their dens,
blindly sucking the blue milk
of a huge & dreamless sleep.
My breath tastes like the wood smoke
from my chimney, oak & cherry–now
rising, now running along the ground,
blue, blue . . .

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Dave Bonta (bio) crowd-sources his problems by following his gut, which he shares with 100 trillion of his closest microbial friends — a close-knit, symbiotic community comprising several thousand species of bacteria, fungi, and protozoa. In a similarly collaborative fashion, all of Dave’s writing is available for reuse and creative remix under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License. For attribution in printed material, his name (Dave Bonta) will suffice, but for web use, please link back to the original. Contact him for permission to waive the “share alike” provision (e.g. for use in a conventionally copyrighted work).

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