The ready perfumes of summer's middle days,
Creosote, creosote after rain, rain
Bringing up the last of the orange-blossom smell,
The droplets of water rousing the fallen leaves
Enough to make a moment come back to life in them,
A second once more of something, a moment from when
They were white and waxy and alive with themselves.
But night comes, too, to gather this moment,
Even as we want it to stay, even as we will not go inside.
The creosote, the orange blossoms, the hot honeysuckle
Flowers in the desert moonlight, the shadows of yucca,
Those sharp fronds, they make a full burst of daggers
Black on the gray-colored ground of the early evening.
The ocher and pink colors of this place in daytime
Are parts of one color at night, so that to see them
One has to breathe in. And breathing in:
This has the curious effect of rain itself in that moment—
The smell rousing us to what we know inside ourselves.
But that is not the end of it, a rainy day turning itself
Into a moist evening full of crickets.
This place is no different from any other, and rain is rain
Here as much as anywhere. But something happens
In the desert after rain has come. We sleep a good sleep
That night. In the morning, we get up and find ourselves
Standing on the shore of the new world. In the desert,
We watch, if we're careful, and when we point at everything
We are complicit in the great magician's trick of the rain:
Rain falls down wet and gets up green.