This is the month of any-which-way winds
Thunder squalls here, dry flame-fed gusts there,
The final chants of summer of cicada
The frantically thrown together party
Only for rain to tease or heat to wear down.
It was a drought year- bad one- that I saw my first dustdevil- five years old.
Five- a cusp of age when magic meant something more than a cartoon sparkles
And fearlessness still drove me across fences and adults calling after mattered none.
It was the kind of heat lemonade couldn’t touch- maybe a breeze from September taunted it,
And before my eyes, twenty, thirty feet, as upward as my eyes could go the dustdevil shot,
Taking with it parking lot dirt, the hiss of dry grass clippings, maybe some plastic,
And I ran into the middle of it, whoever they were running after me,
But I had to be in the center of that living swirl of tussling winds.
Dust stung my eyes but I didn’t care- my young mouth
Ate dirt but I didn’t care- because I got to be in that
Vortex before it dissipated into nameless wind
And saliva-wetted napkins with stern voices
“You should never…” “you should never”
Trying to wipe away the time I looked up
And saw the whirling mass leading to Infinity
All the while, made of nothing, not even time.
This summer I saw some steam making pillars
Off a pool where such an unlikely collection of us
Were skinny-dipping; people as random as dustdevil jetsam.
I tried to swim to them, the pillars disappeared, I don’t think anyone else saw.
This summer a few storms came through that were cyclonic and rotating, and we’re told to run in fear,
I just took photographs, trying to get back to that child’s upturned eye, never making it.
In the anticlimax of a vortex’s sudden conclusion of dancing, I find myself much like
The particles that fall to the ground, crazy-made and landing anywhere.
Sometimes, the placement is perfect, I am content with the outcome
Of all that spinning and air-jazz, yet also repeating to myself the
Mantra that I’m always where I’m supposed to be, finding
Opposition to the crude landing, isolation among the
Crowd of other lost and wandering bits, looking for
My place of origin, my heap of whatever-
Merely detritus among detritus,
Not my own, dustdevil come
Back and wind me ‘round.
Sand is pulverized
From much larger sources.
We are all grains, fine, fine grains.
We can be picked us and funneled at any minute.
Upon the plain of a high desert or in a suburb puckered in drought.
I’m sand, a tip of a dead dry leaf, a dandelion seed, some folded note never read
Spiraled up, whirled, let down; and so are you, so are we all, looking for either our source
Or comradery among the motley scraps- I’ll take either, or a little of both, just something that gives
Purpose to the crazy weather that gives flight if only for seconds and without control.
Or I’ll take being that kid again, running from my protectors, hurtling toward
Certain danger, which was little more than a dirty face, so I can seize a
Second of bafflement at the swarm of us, a tornado of circumstance,
Gazing through the body of a dustdevil, being the sum of the dust,
Finding nothing devilish in the dance that creates, destroys,
Compels the future stirrings of little running boys.
filed under: from the birdy's beak blogged: 22.29 Mon, 08 Sep '14