I came to the desert to love you.
There were flies on the windowsills
and all the flowers were blooming.
I hadn’t been alone for weeks
and I was tired.
We fought about everything
but I loved you anyway.
My friends worried.
My hair grew a shade lighter
and the sun-drenched roses of my cheeks
faded to bronze.
My eyes became two crescent moons,
My lover smelled of burnt popcorn
as she pressed her small body to mine.
Her mouth and hands were hungry,
hurried, and searching.
I did not have what she wanted —
I don’t remember what it was
I am alone
for the first time in weeks —
laying naked in the whisper of desert breeze
with only the dogs for company
I am at peace, I think.
My belly feels full, my arms heavy.
At least my words have returned to me,
my mind clearing as the desert air
touches every part of me.
The lead wears on the pencil
with which I write.
A pencil is a good tool for me —
seldom used, it suggests leniency
and forgiveness, a lack of inhibition.
Things which I see now
that I am lacking,
I am in heaven here
with the dogs
who snap at the flies and arrange themselves,
bored and graceful, in the center
of carefully woven and weathered rugs
The sun is high. I will wash myself, then set out
to do my work. And my heart is grateful,
for I came to the desert to love you.
And I do, I really do.