By Randall Amster

The fantastical fragrance of desert rain
Taut upon the thorns and thistles
Prickled wafts of pellucid jojoba
Damp fires searing ancient mounds
Minted effluent from juniper dreams
Soothed by expectant bursts of horehound
Caught in the scavenged musk of middens
Archeologies of droplets tossed and found
Aerosol memories carrying futures untold
Pistils and stamens unfurled with desire
Luminous sheens pine for humid affection
Pungent ghosts of all that has transpired
Ecstatic proclamations of possibilities
Sparsely strewn about valleys of hope
Vast grasses fed from above and below
Embodied energies of liquefied smoke
Redolent bubbles often seen and herded
Nary a word from penitent cactus stones
Listening for the mournful trills of quails
Smoothing brittle edges of tattered bones



Randall Amster, J.D. Ph.D., is Co-Director and Teaching Professor of Environmental Studies at Georgetown University and is the author of books including Peace Ecology (Routledge, 2015). Amster served as Executive Director of PJSA for many years and is still an active member.