Hiking South Mountain

By CYNTHIA HOGUE

Arid  stick  of  trail, waving ocotillo: O mottled cactus  branch  pointing beyond  the pictographs of water sources—sun-like spirals, deer drinking— you scan but cannot find.  The eagle’s come a second time to float  on  wind in slow circles of descent until he’s ten feet overhead banking to look you straight in the eye: You look back curious, alert—he is eagle-eyed, words of which under the intent gaze of one eye you grasp full meaning—you the large living thing on the ground. The third time, your wife saw a shadow of wings sweep over the yard. What was that? You were looking at the clock while your wife spoke, and did not see the flit of an impression of moving darkness passing by, or maybe you’d have said.

 

Cynthia Hogue has published twelve books, including Or Consequence, When the Water Came: Evacuees of Hurricane Katrina (interview-poems with photographs by Rebecca Ross), and the co-translated Fortino Sámano (The overflowing of the poem), by Virginie Lalucq and Jean-Luc Nancy (Omnidawn 2012). Her eighth collection of poetry, Revenance, is forthcoming from Red Hen Press in the Fall of 2014.  She teaches in the MFA Program at Arizona State University.

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Hiking South Mountain

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