New Mexican Thanksgiving

This land, this sun, the green gold of sage, tubleweed, and brittle grass is me. As much as flesh, as much as bone. It is love turned to dust to be blown and spread upon the fields. My heart soars at the Zia of the New Mexico highway sign, sign that I am home, faded light of the chambray sky filling every chamber.

This is what the West is to me. Nearly completely unknown until I moved across the country and withered in the wet of the East. The stench of pollution and the sadness of winter bare trees, hills leading to more hills, no snow capped mountains, no turquoise, no pinon. And so I was lost, save for the love of the hubster and my dear, dear friends. Profoundly, oddly. I thought I could live anywhere, my love for the world, my eager limbs ready to root. This is what it is to learn, to listen, to return to where we are called. Here! This place!

Our first stop on this Thanksgiving trip is Taos: choke cherry, chocolate (at chokola – deelicious!!), and colorful cemeteries. Twenty-four years since we were last there, and I, of impeccable memory, don’t recognize a thing. All is new and dazzling, yet again. We stay in the little geodesic dome on the outskirts of town, starlight dense and wild, the universe peering down on our sleeping, our sleeplessness, our laughter, through the triangle of light. The cat will cry at the door until we let it in and it cuddles like it is ours. Dogs do the same, bounding down the path. Coyotes sing us to sleep, a most thorough welcome home.

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