Born again in Arizona

        If I were to be born
        again in Arizona
        perhaps I'd come as a hawk
        red tailed, pale breasted, sharp eyed
        high over flat mesas and Hopi
        sacred dancing Kachinas -
        snow on peaks guarding distance.

        Or as a horned toad, four legged,
        her spikes hardly showing
        against dry fallen needles
        in evergreen pine forest
        high on the Mingus Mountain.

        Or maybe as hummingbird
        darting in four directions
        deep in the canyons by Tucson
        his feathers flashing brightly,
        her tiny eggs safely hatching.

        A rattlesnake perhaps
        among shafts of old goldmines
        far into Superstitions
        where trails carry no hikers
        and no beer bottles shine broken

        None of them has to dodge
        snowbirds from Minnesota
        transplants from California
        crowding all streets and highways
        in their vans and their Lincolns

        They do not weep each morning
        over mountains, hills, deserts
        covered with creeping cancer
        of big development houses:
        more new pavement, more sewers.

        They do not swing their car keys
        on a chain as a weapon
        crossing a dark street swiftly
        listening for the footsteps
        of a mugger or rapist.

        And they don't miss their exits
        scared to change lanes too quickly:
        driver of the red Bronco
        may get very offended
       and shoot up small white Sentra.

        Maybe I better never
        get born again in Arizona.

        Izabel Sonia Ganz
        December 1997

A Letter to Hawk

The Crone's Poetry Pages