Fragrant smoke drifting to the four winds,
the sage seemed to say, keep searching;
and the snake slithered away so I'd know
the road would not be straight.
The pictures on the old rocks spoke enigmas,
mystery spread upon the silence of stone;
and the canyon walls just fell to pieces
when I asked where the water went.
A lone raven croaked his way overhead,
dry laughter in a desert of stillness,
and I wondered if he was really there at all.
A mind can crack. Everything does in the desert.
Eyes mere squints from the sun and confusion,
I squat by the fire, contemplating truth, the layered
memories of rocks, the unfathomed galaxy above—
and the sagebrush burns, and says to keep searching.