New Mexico Lightning

by Rachel Kaufman

falls like a candle
burning downwards
and out, bleats
into the canyon
old enough
to receive light
and not burn
When it bestows
upon rock redness
for its aging skin,
divides the sky
in slanted parts,
creates spirits
that reach
out their wings
to catch shards,
(I bet the cacti
hear this each
night), dances needles
which fly off
its path in the dark—

on my drive to the sea
I realized there was only
land and storm leaning
into earth,
breaking the soil
into pieces so
it could claim,
at sunrise,
its mending.

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