Summer Storm, Wupatki Ruins

By Katie Cappello

The light, first, goes dim

so gradually you don’t notice

your hands, the ruins

disappear. Then drops

fall fat through hot air,

the air that, a minute ago,

sandblasted your face red

as you trudged through

brick doorways, thrust

yourself into brick rooms,

looking for relief: a shadow,

a cool corner, a plastic bottle

filled with yellow Gatorade

dripping condensation and

pressed against the back

of your neck. Remember

the flume of icy air pushing

out of the earth? A wind

now travels down, equally cold,

turns your sweat to salt

as the sallow horizon pushes

black, rain-gorged clouds

forward, from all four directions,

to a focused point directly

overhead, until the pressure

is too much, a vein inside

a temple, and they explode.


Katie Cappello lives and works in a small town in Northern California. Her poems are forthcoming from Crab Orchard Review, Los Angeles Review, Memoir(and), and Slipstream. She is the author of the poetry collection Perpetual Care as well as a chapbook entitled A Classic Game of Murder forthcoming from Dancing Girl Press.

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