Great Plains

There’s something about
the Great Plains.

The dust-bowl grit lingers
on more
than just
your boots and clothes.

It stains your soul in a way.

Even though I haven’t set foot
in Oklahoma in decades,

there are certain things about it
that I carry like anchors
in the fibers
of my being.

Its unbearable
white-hot heat
sears into your DNA.

I have lived in deserts
that felt
less deserted
than the flatlands
of the Sooner State.

Where life really is
a Steinbeck novel.