The Mountains Around Me Are My Teacher

by Charlene Langfur

Today the white clouds nestle
between the mountain tops, easing around the snowy peaks.
Soon I think the wild black crows
who live in the fan palms trees near me
will fly off toward the mountain tops,
as if nothing more is to be done here,
no more fan palms to climb over,
only flying in the wind, soaring in wafts of air.
My 13-pound honey-colored dog and I keep our eyes
on the mountains as we walk step by step
in the winter desert on a day ordinary as any other.
We walk past the orange trees and the yucca
and the fruit all over the ground and
the yucca pods opening into white silky flowers.
The mountains are always the same.
Always we have no agenda when we are near them,
no program, only moving along as we do beside them,
ready to move even further than we meant to and maybe
even beyond where we are able, past the old palm oasis
and the desert sand full of cactus under the mountains
under the blue sky, walking past the orange cactus flowers,
past everything we know by heart, the fan palms,
the lizards and the rabbits, watching all of it around us
as if for the first time.