The Sunday Poem: Karla Linn Merrifield... Be Now My Anasazi

Anyone who wanders into the wild canyons of life, eventually picks up the sandy rocks, notices the obsidian flakes, and kicks the dirt a little.  This morning's poem promises to keep our eventual destination in mind, no matter what we encounter.

Karla Linn Merrifield is a seven-time Pushcart Prize nominee and a National Park Artist-in-Residence.  Her newest book is Lithic Scatter and Other Poems, published by Stewart Warren's Albuquerque-based publishing house, Mercury Heartlink.  She will be featured at a reading/workshop at Jules's Poetry Playhouse on Tuesday, June 4th.

Be Now My Anasazi

I vow never to ensnared by hard places,
as narrow as the path between them proves to be.

I’ll use small words like hot, dry, stone,
but not tell you how sere the desert is,

nor say if these walls are sedimentary in nature,
if former gods laid them down in the Jurassic.

We need no scientific terminology for geology.
I would not lead you into highland canyons

without trust in my primitive lexicon.
So I will keep my sentences fleet.

As quick as mountain thundershowers.
Quick as flash floods.

No matter which river, which season,
we will be able to pass through, across.

An alcove in the cliff awaits.
We will begin to paint.

We shall color our love ocher.
We picture it beyond the river narrows.

Poetry submissions are welcome.  Email

Views: 183

Comment by Karla Linn Merrifield on May 26, 2013 at 8:27am

John, you ditchrider you!  Thank you soooooooooooo much for this big splash!  I'm going to post the link on FB to share with my Friends!  And it'll go into my next blog posting as well.  More coverage for your site and lil ole me. 

Comment by Izquierdo on May 26, 2013 at 2:46pm

Fleet and sweet works for me. Flash floods, ee tee cee. Good work, Karla Linn, thanks also to my friend.....the Ditch Rider., 

Comment by Karla Linn Merrifield on May 26, 2013 at 3:57pm

Thanks, Izquierdo, for your kind words.  Who knows, maybe we'll meet when I'm in ABQ.  IN addition to the reading/workshop at Jules Poetry Playhouse on 6/4, I'll be at the NMSPS convention...if only on the final day (travel plans got in the way otherwise.)  Smiles!

Comment by John Roche on May 26, 2013 at 7:13pm

Looking forward to seeing you at Jules' Playhouse, Karla. What a great reading you gave up in Brockport last weekend!

Comment by Karla Linn Merrifield on May 26, 2013 at 7:40pm

Thanks, John!  Again!  I'm psyched! :)

Comment by Karla Linn Merrifield on May 26, 2013 at 7:40pm

PS Have a great time at the JP picnic.  Can't be both places at one time.  Yet! :)

Comment by Dee Cohen on May 27, 2013 at 5:14am

I enjoyed your poem Karla. Filled with the feel and history of our desert world. Dee

Comment by Karla Linn Merrifield on May 27, 2013 at 2:56pm

Dee!  Many thanks!  Glad you enjoyed my Anasazi lovers' fantasy.  Won't be long now and we'll be in New Mexico.  Can't wait to be back in your desert world.  I can almost smell the pinyon pines!


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