smell of
ozone and
creosote

only whipcord jaws
of poverty grasses
the desert is full of hungry
grey dogs

here, space becomes time but—

I want to kneel in the red dirt
and gather armsful of mesquite

—how many days

could I carry? me with my hands full
of branches and dust between my teeth

here space becomes time
and no one says
you have to pray—

just kneel
in the dirt and gather
thorny branches

each day I pluck the thorns and
each day something new trickles from
my sweating palms

what then? a perfect chain of
fat red beads stretched

between a perfect chain of crepe paper days
draped over? draped—

here, space becomes time

and we gather branches