Michael Gregory


The same seawind that beats the cypress
back toward the Mendocino headlands

whispers among the giant redwoods
whistles through the bristlecone

rushes across Death Valley's
brittle sage and three days later

breaking against the Chiricahuas
these last reaches of the Sierra Madre

spills her Pacific waters on this
high desert valley bringing autumn's

chill and your primordial scent
here where most of the year the rivers

run dry and the heart is expected to keep
good time wound up with thorns and reptiles