Standing in the Edgeland

Wendy Howe


The wind wants to tear down my fence
loosening the palings and pushing forth
the openness of an edgeland, my garden spilling
into a field of Joshua trees. Coyotes, jack rabbits
and others could enter — but the dust needs no fallen barrier;
it never did. It carries secrets of the land
and of those buried beneath, the pungent smell
of drought. I’m reluctant to breach this grove of  trees
sheltering ghosts and ravens, the tribe of my sins
and those messengers who would tell me what has been cast. Science
calls this place a high desert habitat — with little rain
and four seasons. I know better. It’s where you come to listen
on the border of nowhere and everywhere, wanting to solve
the riddle of what sings in your bones, the disquiet that quarantines,
renders you vulnerable — to imagination and what she hides
in her hood of  fur.  Her most primal state.



Wendy Howe is an English teacher and freelance writer who lives in Southern California Her poetry reflects her interest in myth, diverse landscapes and ancient cultures. Over the years, she has been published in an assortment of journals both on-line and in print. Among them: The Linnet’s Wings, Ariadne’s Thread, Mirror Dance, Strange Horizons, Niteblade, Goblin Fruit, Mythic Delirium, Scheherezade’s Bequest, and Yellow Medicine Review. Some of her latest work will be forthcoming in The Peacock Journal and Poetry Pacific.