January Poetry Blitz: Simmons B. Buntin


If there is an art
to scaling desert
boulders in bare feet
it is this: my daughter,
eleven, tosses her sandals
to prickly pear
and mesquite, pries
knees into crevice,
and presses onto the sun-
drunk surface
like a lizard revealed,
hair blazing in late afternoon
light, pants hitched
mid-calf, a hard
look of fear
and determination
before fingers and feet
release to the flat
wind, time slowed
by her sudden
leap to sharp granite
and the improbable
landing, only a thin
necklace of blood
on her ankle, red
like the thorn-guarded
flower, the arc
of a girl’s first desire.

By Simmons B. Buntin

(From Bloom, Salmon Poetry. Simmons Buntin lives in Tucson, Arizona, where he edits the online journal Terrain.org: A Journal of the Built & Natural Environments.)

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