Cubilete Mountain Pilgrimage

The ranch hands, truckers, cooks and thieves gather.
These hewers of wood, drawers of water
mount-up like a cavalry of conscripts
arcing up to Cristo Rey on switchbacks
belabored as the road out of Eden.

Their boots could be hides trampled by St. George:
snakes or lizards long coaxed out of shadows
to serve sunlit heralds of judgment day
for good odds of heavenís aching prologue
in the hungered arms of stone effigies.

As dust devils hustle backlogs of filth,
men gain altitude above a river
where one mare leaves her foal to ridersí dogs.
High up, they finish the climb on their knees,
incense smoke graying a priestís dark vestments.

Guanajuato, Mexico

Jeffrey Alfier lives in Tucson, Arizona. His recent publication credits include Forge Journal, New Madrid, Pearl Magazine (forthcoming), and Spot Literary Magazine. His chapbooks are Strangers within the Gate (2005) and Offloading the Wounded (2009). He and fellow poet Tobi Cogswell are co-editors of San Pedro River Review.

Boxcar Poetry Review - ISSN 1931-1761