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Cynthia Anderson

Cynthia Anderson lives in the Mojave Desert near Joshua Tree National Park. Her poems have appeared in numerous journals, and her work has been nominated for Best of the Net and the Pushcart Prize. She is the author of ten poetry collections and co-editor of the anthology A Bird Black As the Sun: California Poets on Crows & Ravens.

The Interior

No one lives there—too remote,
merciless, a place for outlaws

in hiding, not meant to sustain
human life. The wind can rend

skin from flesh, the cold take
your eyes. Yet you yearn for

this waste of glacier and desert,
volcano and lake—an untamed

wilderness shaped like a heart.
Something waits for you

on the knife-edge of danger—
the chance to be someone

else. The chance you might
not return. The chance

earth herself might sing
in a voice you can hear.


here is the light
that allows another
day to happen

every living thing
leans toward that beam
from the east

golden after
the grey of dawn
a slight breeze

stirring branches
and leaves—
this is what

we came for
the light riding

behind us
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