Friday, February 18, 2022

Big Sky Country

The name is no mere hyperbole.
The sky is unbounded blue, impossibly vast,
extending from the horizon before me
to the razor thin line to the south.

All is quiet except for the occasional murmur
of wind combing grass and tugging on my sleeve.

Two arcs on either side connect them both
without a seam, hitch, or geometric vowel.

In the far distance. low mountain peaks
have the audacity to break the smoothness
of the world’s rim, but that is okay.

It is merely a bit of filigree work
carved by earth or sky—I do not know which.

And though the land is majestic in its monotony
as it flies off in all directions without permission,
painted in broad strokes by a brush

held by the hand of a lingering Lakota spirit,
every point of latitude and longitude
is the center of this loping cowboy universe.

Blue and brown grasses mix like a Monet,
gloriously uneven since the seasons are changing
and the last cold front has signaled surcease
by rolling like white carpet into Canada.

My feet make contact with the ground,
not that gravity weighs me down
since I am lightheaded as I stand surrounded
by so much of everything and nothing.

I do not recall how I got here,
though I suppose I must have walked
unless I was placed here as an advanced scout
by the Lakota hand that takes nothing for granted.

Or perhaps I was snagged by a diurnal dreamcatcher.

I love my Creole home—it’s music and food
and delightful jumble of vernacular pidgin.

But sometimes I need the absence
of streets and brick and telephone wires.

Mr. Taylor flies gingerly to Carolina,
but I occasionally I go to Wyoming in my mind.

~William Hammett

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