The road will bring you pain,
long and famished and full of dreams,
stretched out on the sand beneath
Scorpio’s tail and the Southern constellations,
laid down by weary travelers
who have – slowly and shuffling –
come to understand that if you let go
of all the pieces that come loose
as you rush over the corrugations
left by the last rain, the thunder storm
that wiped any trace of other walkers,
it is the road itself that can
redeem you.

For in the dreams is a madness,
a hollow figure with music washing through,
watching from the back of a dance floor
in the heart of the desert, and cursive
blue writing with a simple message:
‘You are the only one’,
as all the others kicked up dust
and the wizard looked on from a random point
in the golden ratio, wild and at peace
with himself.

The fractal chaos of the Karoo
takes on an infinite dimension
when you wander down its desert roads,
nothing but cattle grates and birdsong
and the endless distance, repeated at every scale,
as if it were by musical composition
that we could come to grasp
the patterns on that ancient sea’s dried plains,
before forgetting and rain storms that wash
away our footprints, as if we haven’t always
wandered here,
down endless roads, humming lost symphonies
trying to guess the pitch of the thing,
the rhythm that will guide us
to drenched redemption, wild and at peace
with what is.

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