We pray in strange ways and
genuflect before the gods at hand—
thin skinned, mending fence,
drops of blood from rusty barbs
on blond stems, sweat spots
in the dust when it will not rain.

And when it does, we spray
and hoe weeds at the gates
for rattlesnakes, make fire breaks
to hold the leap of flames at bay
and thank God every summer
evening for another day of feed.

Between weathermen, we hear
news of another world churning
with drama and disaster, and turn
instead to native totems that grace
the land, then nod to our gods—
believing in more than we understand.

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