We sat on the porch
the old woman and I,
our rocking chairs squeaked
with every thrust of energy.

“Is it hard to live here?”
I wondered.

“Only if it doesn’t rain.”
The woman whispered,
her voice soft against the desert’s strength.

“Why stay in such a harsh place?”
I asked.

“Oh . . . the beauty.”
She answered.

Cactus bloomed with tissues of color as
insects danced amongst the nectar
gifted by the parched land.

Above, a graceful hawk pierced the air
slapping the silence with its flight.

The dusty porch faced the evening.
Our words drifted into a hidden peace.
Song birds filled our space and
clouds filled the sky.

“How long have you been here?”
My thoughts not yet quenched.

“Since the beginning.”
The old woman hummed as she eyed the past
nestled in the rusted machinery.