Love hides in loneliness,
in the hollow parts of the soul.
It sits there, in the dark, waiting patiently for
distant murmurs to become vivid voices.
But it does not call out, will not call out.
That is the law that governs the heart,
It is for the seeker,
Alone, to find
Looking or not.
Sometimes you’ll see it shining between blades of grass,
or glistening on overturned stones at the bottom of riverbeds.
Sometimes, it flicks back and forth in the flame of a candle,
I packed my car & hit the road at midnight. I like traveling by myself, I like the freedom of just going, without fear, without resilience. I drove through the indigo dark down desert roads, and abandoned railroad towns. I passed weigh stations, and souls slumbering in their semis, like dragons guarding their hoards. It rained off and on & I kept a watchful eye on the creatures of the night (deer, and rabbit, and the like, ) who’d run halfway across the highway.
When I rolled up to my destination, hours later, the sky had gone out. The trees were swollen with the light of the moon, and hung heavy as the rain beat down on their branches. I waited for the rain to ease up, I waited & felt my eyes growing tired, I’d considered just sleeping in my car, and reached for my sleeping bag. As I leaned my seat back, the rain let up. Cricket & cicada song filled the sky.
So, I found a little spot, tucked further in and surrounded by trees up near the chisos mountains and made that home for the night. I climbed inside my little tent, and the rain beat down again, this time, with a vengeance. I kicked and cursed, and prayed I wouldn’t blow away. Sure enough, I woke up dry as bone and spilled out of my tent into daybreak. My daily ritual started out with two spoonfuls of bitter coffee, and a biscuit to wash it down with. I sat up, surrounded by mountains, and mesas, and batholiths, and ancient reefs. The lowlying valleyes were washed with green, and light trickled in through the chapperal. A million different landscapes in one, beautiful, vast space.
Maybe it should be the other way around, but I always find it comforting when there is no one in sight for miles, and miles. It’s then that you can feel Earth reclaiming its space; nature occupying, thriving, fighting. Opulence takes the form of a brisk wind, of the creamy, white yucca blossoms, of the ocotillo spindles cradling the sky. I feel the earth curve against my spine and welcome the wind, leaning against my cheek and speaking in not a whisper, but a roar, as it jets like a bull from its pin through the fields and pounds deep into the canyon. I watch as wrens flit like elusive samaris across the tops of mesquite trees, lizards scurrying between my feet, nearly making the ground move under me; bees swarm, summoned by cactus blossoms beckoning new life. If you hiked for days, and miles, you would never once feel alone. After all, with all of this, how could you?