Aurora at Big Bend

Dark plum colored tumbleweeds
drift across the deep navy of predawn light.
Feathers of light yellow brush the sky.
A majestic buck, his antlers a pale crown in the nascent light,
advances past the yuccas,
each adorned by a cascade of creamy plumage.
The warbled salutations of birds
urge on the slow progress of the sun
as it peeks around the mountains and ridges
like a curious shy child—a touch unwilling to join the party,
but too fascinated by the scurry of life
to withdraw back to safety.
The bees shake off their slumber
and emerge from their hive clinging to the craggy precipice
to hum and buzz steadily amid the redbud blossoms.
The sun edges further over the mountains;
the sky lightens as it approaches,
just as a father brightens at his child’s
hesitant first steps, such recklessness, such tentativeness.
The plum tumbleweeds transform
after the blush of dawn light strengthens
into cottonwood seeds drifting across the sky.
The sun sheds its timidity and with a valiant final push
leaves behind the safe embrace of the dry earth
and glows radiant and free in the sky,
and all the desert pauses for a still moment of awe
to bask in its golden splendor.


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