Without cloud, without wind,
just dust rising in an opaque haze,
months of yesterdays the same—

a canyon the gods have forgotten,
overlooked while taking their business
elsewhere. This is no lovers’ quarrel,

no slow strip tease, no small spat
to make up with passion,
it will take a while to ever trust

these gods again. Perhaps we never
received notice that they’ve been laid off,
sacked, canned in the reorganization

of the planet, their replacements: bumbling
neophytes in seductive, hard-bellied struts
without wear, without compassion.

Perhaps they have retired, given-in
to changing times to watch the show unfold
without water—you never know.

4 responses to “HOW COULD IT BE

  1. Beautifully sad ode to that which is happening today out here.


    • 50 foot waves on the north shore of Oahu ahead of hurricane force winds, high surf advisories from Ventura to San Diego Counties continue until Sunday. Noticeable weather change today, I think, but can’t remember, it feels like rain. Thanks, Angeline, for checking-in and for your comment. Let’s keep our fingers crossed.


  2. John, your posts over these months have weighed heavy on me. I feel as though a good childhood friend of mine is in the hospital, very ill, and you are sending grim reports in your daily poems, prose and photos. You, and my beautiful California, are in my prayers. Meanwhile, I am working on a book of essays that are all about water, and how the lack of it is what motivated me, and my mother also, to move to the rainy Pacific northwest, and ultimately led to my mother’s death. Now our over-abundance of water, and the dark, wet, and cold winters make me long for “home”. My husband died in a tragic accident last winter, and in my sorrow and grieving I keep thinking about high-tailing it out of here, and going back to sunny CA, but your posts, and the news from down there, are giving me second thoughts.
    I’ll keep up with the prayers, and perhaps a few rain dances as well.


    • So sorry for loss, Kim.

      Thanks for your prayers and kind thoughts. You know how it is here, seldom perfect weather for the livestock business, but the ground is resilient. It appears that the repercussions of this drought may only be survived by Corporate Ag, as small farmers cannot afford the six-digit expense of drilling any new wells. Hope as I might that the small farmers survive, this could really change the rural culture of our San Joaquin Valley. Time will tell, but nothing stays the same, we can only hope for the best.


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