1887 – 1906
Have you seen my bluebirds today?
Have you fed them a few crumbs of stale rye bread?
I must have taken a hundred walks as a young girl
In search of my freewheeling friends.
And with only my slender shadow at my side,
I recited a million silent invocations to my Lord.
I greeted the noon tide on those many happy occasions
As if in flight myself.
And my only friends,
Regaled in flying blazing blue,
Flew with me to fantastic heights
And I kissed the rising sun a hundred times
But received not even a smiling sigh in return.
And it was in Black Canyon
That I discovered the one true answer to my only question in life.
I discovered that love is a clinging cloud
That arrives and sometimes lingers.
Or it is a cloud that moves on quickly
Like a late train to Los Angeles in 1904
Leaving only a faint wisp of windy dust in its wake.
Roscoe Settle was that cloud;
A cloud at once full of light and rare beauty.
A cloud that stood still and refused to wink or budge.
But I gave Roscoe Settle my pursed lips
And like a silly infatuated fool
I gave him the hidden treasure within my bosom.
God knows that I pleaded and begged like a panhandling maniac
For my handsome boy to stay.
To stay forever with me in this town of sensational sunsets
And of soaring spiraling bluebirds
In search of a lonely jilted girl
Who now walks as an ethereal restless ghost
Amongst the crosses and stone lilacs of this dead land.
Only my parents knew of my untimely demise.
Only the sheriff and Mr. White knew that I took my own life.
And that I ended my life over Roscoe Settle.
I found the old rope in my father’s barn
And the last thing I remember
Was the quick snap of the rope
And of my soft svelte neck
As I threw myself,
Noosed and sad
From my father’s hay loft
On a moonless August evening.