Moab on My Mind

Wilson Arch under clouds

It’s been almost a year since I was last in Moab. I’m beginning to yearn to be there again.  The picture above is Wilson Arch, 25 miles south of the town. It’s a magical place. I look through the arch and wonder if there truly is a window to another dimension.  What lies on the other side?

Moab is desert and, as such, offers the beauties and harshness of life and truth.  Here’s a story of what I saw after the rains came and left.

Ants – After the Rains in Moab

After the rains,
the ants came marching
across the concrete slab
to fling themselves, it seemed,
upon the mercies and the whims
of the great, blue chlorinated sea,
ant paddling
across an expanse of pale-blue heated water
foreign to them in their desert home,
holding their heads high
so as not to swallow

(how did they know that act could save their lives?),

and I, with great concern, scooped
them one by one into my palm
and tossed them to the safety
of the hot and drying sand.
Perhaps it was the flying
and the stun of landing hard
— rattling in their suits of black and shining iron armor —
when, after all, they’d set their minds
to finding glorious adventure
or, perhaps, to die, but
I swear they stood and shook the water off
before they turned to scurry once again
to launch themselves into the pool of doom.
I think about it sometimes,
how I finally let them meet the fate they’d chosen,
and I wonder how a person of my age
does not yet know if that was
right or wrong.

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