Newspaper Rock

Newspaper Rock
for Robinson Jeffers

The place is haunted.
One spirit we know,
Who scolds us still.
We came West to see the Yellowstone,
The Canyon, the Bristlecones;
Near Moab we camped 
At Dead Horse Point above the great
Hairpin turn the River makes 
In total abandonment of it, then
Made this side trip 
Not realizing we were summoned 
Much less why.
Many passed here, their inscriptions
Fading gradually from the rock face.
A copper sun’s heavy gaze
Is a scrutiny that misses naught.
None stayed but one.
I do not dispute he owns it.
Why here? These are empty desperate
Unhewn stretches of time and distance.
Spaces, Non-places, suited to him,
To his skilled hands.
But this is not my fate.
And if you too should be summoned and 
Anyone asks your business, your story
Rather than deny you have one
My advice is just say
You’re not from around here.
Because you aren’t.
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