Wednesday, 25 November 2020

High Noon

by Cynthia Anderson

The poet exits the building
in the middle of a reading,

leaves her papers at the podium
to heed the call of the trail.

She climbs higher, rounds
the bend, picks her way

through rockpiles, shouts,
Can you hear me?

Her voice carries all the way
back—everyone knows

where she is. Satisfied, she
descends to read a few more.

Instead of words, she lets
the scent of sage, chaparral,

and open space waft from
her body. The audience breathes
these poems of the desert
while the clock keeps ticking.

* * * * *

Cynthia Anderson lives in the Mojave Desert near Joshua Tree National Park. Her poems have appeared in numerous journals, and she is a Pushcart Prize and Best of the Net nominee. She has authored nine collections and co-edited the anthology A Bird Black As the Sun: California Poets on Crows & Ravens. Recently she guest edited Cholla Needles 46, which is available on Amazon.

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