Copyright Lee Ann Mortensen 2002




When you said your love had changed,
the city’s asphalt opened to wet earth roots
and dark, living soils. Then a concussion crack,
collective headache, and waves of weedy earth rising,
splitting the air until no language could save me.
Our attraction eroding in slow motion,
the ground a dissolving fracture, sink hole canyon, and me
going over the edge for a view.
The Paleozoic Kaibab whites, 250 million years older
than our passion, loose with sand and fossils.
As you glance down, already moving, I hit the next layer
past pink rattlers and an open-eyed owl in a cave.
My skin scratched by prickly pear, and then the hard,
Precambrian granite scraping off an ear before
I hit bottom, my hand feeling tamarisk, my body wedging
into soft, muddy, wordless sand. The feel of lapping water,
as my cells float down river, unsure of where to land.