The Cactus

You sit in the forgotten bone-dry hills

surrounded by sand and sagebrush

above Buffalo Pound Lake.


A day and a night, and then

three more days and nights.

Do not mark the hours. Just sit

until the prickly pear raises its bloom.


A pale thing, translucent moon, sea anemone,

the first thin veil of a cataract that will lead a man

to the necessity of seeing with another kind of eye.


Can you birth a thing like this flower?

Elemental, composed of water and light.

The concentrated effort of pure will.


The blossom wilts and drops

without sadness, nothing resembling

nostalgia or regret.

Bibliographical info

Randy Lundy, "THE CACTUS" from Blackbird Song. Copyright © 2017 by Randy Lundy. Reprinted by permission of the publisher.

Source: Blackbird Song (University of Regina Press, 2017)


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