and the mesquite is dry and gray
and the parched yew is dry too,
a dessicated yellow stalk scrawling
its bleached and barren pod into
a high calligraphy of white cirrus.
There are spikes and thorns
with bleached green razor edges,
but the cactus has ceased to care.
If a rainbow can be found
under the pale, pitiless sun
it rises from dust and rocks,
for the eye willing to wait,
and the rocks are drier still:
pink and sienna and gunmetal blue
for when the sand in the washed arroyo
desires the festive cracks of others.
The lake in the distance does not exist
as anything but a glittering that mocks
if it takes an act of faith to exist at all.
It is too early for the spring blush
and too late for the slivered moon.
There is only time
to wait for the time
like the other time,
that long ago time,
when water poured from the sky.