Living in the San Luis Valley was one of the most constantly astonishing experiences of my life. It was ridiculously beautiful and explosively alive spiritually, and nowhere I’ve been before or have since was so geologically intense. If you don’t believe stones have spirits, spend two weeks there.
So much of my spiritual growth and education happened there; I had my second shamanic calling and my first real grasp of what was being demanded of me. I met nature spirits for the first time. I began to understand just how deeply being a woman was intertwined with who I was becoming spiritually. And that was all above and beyond the education I was getting in my college courses.
I feel deep gratitude to the place and to its spirits that I’ve only begun to be able to express adequately in poetry.
Look Over There
Do you see? The fatal car accident,
The barfight, the ignorance, the bigotry,
Gout, heart failure, diabetes mellitus —
All the shit they’re going to say is your fault.
And over here, the international incident,
The police state, the political debacle,
The proliferation and the escalation —
All that, at least, they can’t blame on you.
You have no say in any of it, none at all.
You’re that man on the beach clutching
A forever-diminishing fistful of sand until
You learn to hold it in your cupped palm.
Then when you look, you’ll see Blanca Peak
Become a spreading drop of sacred blood
As the hot end of the rainbow descends,
A literal sunshower of pinks and peaches and
Reds that haven’t even been named yet, and for
A little while, you’ll forget to look at anything else.