Wednesday, June 17, 2015


bed ‘f th’navajo truck –
some blankets ‘n’ tools, th’high mountains,
out ‘f th’phoenix summer


high ‘n th’painted desert,
th’scorpion’s noticed – sun’s gone down
a little earlier

window rock on fourth -
this ain't ar'zona, he says,
but sure is th'u.s.

window rock patriot –
our fireworks are navajo time,
not arizona

too poor f’r firecrackers,
phoenix barrio kids shoot guns –
she sees ‘m in th’e r

ambulance ‘n th’valley
easier t’find guns ‘n’ ammo
than buy th’firecrackers

baked out wash near why,
still asleep, th'cool hours 'f morning -
th'rattler disapproves


paradise valley –
been in phoenix all her life,
won’t touch th’sun-baked rails

th’ancestral homeland –
douglas t’ten, ‘n th’night breeze, tells ‘bout
skeleton canyon

sky harbor pilot
scorns hazy summers, but loves
t'lift right up out 'f them

sky harbor pilot –
angling t’ward vegas, sees th’house
down th’scorching valley

strip rancher curses
th’day th’saints sold out t’ th’government –
searing sun, blue sky

tent city sheriff –
justifies th’one thirty temps
‘f th’concentration camps


drones ‘f sierra vista
don’t mind midday’s scorching heat
control them from th’ground

sixty six motel -
gideon's cool, but kingman's walks
egg-fry hot by nine

kingman motel tale –
sleeps t’noon t’avoid th’heat, he says,
sun melts th’beatles tape

somewhere outside why
desert summer stillness asks -
always traveling?

car breaks down 'n oracle,
kid's sure it's sign of god - hiker's
back on dusty road

roller coaster road
pool ‘n th’back yard, ‘n’ he feels guilty
with each new mixed drink

like geronimo -
hides in apache cave, scorns
air conditioning

hundred twenty ‘n th’shade,
encanto village in june –
gallon ‘f water ‘n th’trunk

potholders ‘n th’console –
mesa lass parked ‘t th’water store,
can’t touch th’steering wheel

ajo road rattler –
lets you camp ‘n’th’old dry wash,
tells you when th’sun’s up

in th’superstitions,
th’blazing heat, th’water bottle
‘n’ th’workings ‘f his own mind

mex’can gold poppies
light up th’hillsides – tempe kid
decides t’go t’vegas

on ten through phoenix
th’trucker talks football t’stay awake –
last big town b’fore th’coast

oatman's wild burros
bob for apples - ghost tale of
some irish miner

hunter’s moon, he stands
‘t th’rim ‘f th’grand canyon – tries not t’think
‘bout th’meaning ‘f it all

decorated skulls -
bisbee schoolteacher explains
nat'ral confusion

decorated skulls
tucson schoolteacher’s learned how
t’explain t’ th’new parents

visiting artist –
‘n th’bisbee lass’ tour – what shocks her’s
th’decorated skulls

sedona tourist –
soul’s day ‘n th’vortex, doesn’t buy
th’stuff about healing

two vets, red poppies,
phoenix walmart parking lot -
a little conflict

philly - l.a. hitch,
jalapeno grits 'n' stuffing -
mesa hol'day grace

jalapeno grits –
th’mesa kids thank god d’rectly
‘t th’thanksgiving dinner

mesa rebel’s tale –
even ‘t thanksgiving, he likes
th’jalapeno grits

half th’night t’get t’phoenix
guy buys th’breakfasts, pays th’tip, takes
candy canes from th’jar

balloon santa, propped
up on phoenix lawn, inches
from prickly cactus

like th’parking meters,
th’saguaros guard th’mountain pass
it’s christmas ‘n tucson

phoenix lass’ window –
balloon santa sways in th’breeze
near th’prickly cactus

tucson saguaros,
twinkling stars greet the new year,
guard pass through mountains

his ears’re still ringing,
freak hailstorm, apache junction
new year with th’snow birds

apache junction
tells ‘bout th’freak hailstorm ‘n th’metal
‘bout th’time ‘f th’countdown

apache junction
preacher’s found th’snowbirds – at least
thy have time t’listen

snow on strip pinon -
canyon's fresh blanket shelters
from mormon country

used t’playing gospel –
got gigs all winter singing
‘t all th’snowbird churches


gospel ‘n th’snowbird church –
he’d feel it more ‘f he had th’gas
t’get t’casa grande (1-18)

more snow ‘n th’streets of flag
she plays th’clubs ‘n th’valley ‘n vegas,
now she hears his voice

played th’clubs around flag,
she says, mitten on her tears –
she, too, does his songs

navajo blankets,
ride, from gap to snowed-in flag,
remain unfinished

tonopah exit -
even the desert winters
strike him as extreme

cactus garden brims
with exotic blossoms in
phoenix midday sun

saguaros stand guard -
joy of desert chicory,
escape from tucson

phoenix traffic - swath
of mexican gold poppies
don't mind the diesel

tucson beer garden –
she left him here ‘n th’blooming yuccas,
he still plays th’beeswing song

sunrise, from small tent
wide, pastel, ancient landscape -
easter, hermit's rest

th’organ pipe cactus
doesn’t mind th’solitude, blooms
entirely t’please th’sun

ajo lass – th’blooming
cycle ‘f th’organ pipe cactus
‘s one thing she knows well

sonoran peoples,
th’topic ‘f h’r books – tucson folkfest,
th’present attraction

sonora’s blooming,
‘n’ through th’tohono o’odham res,
her search f’r common ground

blooming sonoras,
th’allman brothers drum solo –
th’cup runneth over

slight may rain, th’red blooms
of th’ocotillo on ten
sudden change of mood

oc’tillos on ten -
soft red flowers ‘f th’sonora
could be th’love ‘f his life

broken down on ten
th’ocotillos, th’morning sun,
have t’accept what is


valley interstate –
th’mexican gold poppies catch
th’morning sun, just so

serious saguaros’
flow’rs hold out in th’sonora heat –
and th’town’s called carefree

saguaros ‘f tucson
in th’high mountain pass, their flow’rs
seem t’welcome her home


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