Friday, March 6, 2009


I am fortunate to be spending a few days in the desert southwest as indicated in my previous post. It is an environment with which I am attuned and every time I come to this climate I experience more of its grace.

Several years ago I had the opportunity to experience the Anza-Borrego desert environment in California. I spent several days in that desert camping and writing. It was both extraordinarily beautiful and sad at the same time.

The Anza-Boreago is an ancient seabed and is crusted with tiny fossil seashells and with the modern tracks of intrusive dune buggies.

I was not prepared then or even now in my memory for the deserts beauty or mankind’s trespass upon it. The result was a poem I call Carrizo Wash.

A desert vast to see and feel,
What is the truth and what is real.
There’s streaks and scratches on the land,
Where little grows and few things stand.

It’s tracks of man deep tire scarred,
On seabeds floor now wheel marred.
It’s Barren dry, yet full of life
Neath rocks of weather’s cutting knife.

With granite grays and sandy stone,
And black basalt and sun bleached bone
The Sages bloom in pale hue,
Where green and creams now rendezvous.

The Fossil shells from tranquil past,
Lay ‘neath a sea that didn't last.
Old solitude with crusts of shell,
What ancient day did mark your knell?

Thou sacred sweep, what is the worse,
No ocean cover or man’s traverse?
Intruding sounds in paradise,
Does make this silent place die twice.

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