[Mark Glover is Contributing Editor Alpine. Click here to visit Trans-Pecos Science Moment for more of his thoughts on the Big Bend.]
You lay in grass, facing the eight tubes of truth. The full moon glows. You are in the shadow of a pole, a thin pole and you are hidden, like a sliver of wood separated from its tree. The first tube beckons and you kneel as the monsters roar. They seek your soul, but you are hidden. They conjure to lift you out of shadow and consume you.
You awaken. You look outside at the house next door, encircled by chain link, a Ford, a Mazda, a mailbox. You look at the monsters and want to lie in the grass again.
The cold car door handle succumbs in your hand. The controls flash. It is monster.
You drive past strip malls. Miles of malls. On the road south you decide only to speak to yourself.
The interstate IHOP beckons. You will not eat today. It is your voice, it is you.
A song blossoms in the desert. You finger the controls. The mountains ahead of you, older than you, much.
The sky is color. You have forgotten this color.
You park. You stand in the Highland. You study the jagged peaks and the wine earth. Hours.
“I will drink coffee” It is your voice. You coffee. You walk. You see things again.
You seek spices: Cinnamon, cloves, cardamom, compilations of the abstract. The smells distill and stab you.
You erase your mind of consistent thoughts. You taste the air. You smell the wet juice of crushed cactus. You lean in the reds and browns and travel in their frequency.
You stand at the curb and follow the ants with your mind.
At the club, you hear the music, the beat, the sub beat, the subwoofer – you dance. She is pretty. She smiles again and twirls. She leans forward and shouts in your ear. You hear her. You want her. But you cannot speak. You dance, but the song is over. You look around: alone on the dance floor without music, without her. You want to laugh. You laugh. You feel a new truth.
You slink out of the mud walls of the club. The Milky Way. You want to sleep under it’s cloud and you drive out of town over a hill and a metal garbage can calls you. You sleep and awaken to purple. You remember this color and salute it in your mind and cook it permanent.
Today you will eat. Today you will speak.
You fuel up. A man looks at your ride. “Sweet.”
You nod and smile. You are monster. But you are wood.
You drive back to Midland and promise to never come down.