Verse > Anthologies > Harriet Monroe, ed. > Poetry: A Magazine of Verse, 1912–22
Harriet Monroe, ed. (1860–1936).  Poetry: A Magazine of Verse.  1912–22.
Three Men Entered the Desert Alone
By Alice Corbin
From “New Mexico Songs”

THREE men entered the desert alone.
But one of them slept like a sack of stone
As the wagon toiled and plodded along,
And one of them sang a drinking song
He had heard at the bar of The Little Cyclone.        5
Then he too fell asleep at last,
While the third one felt his soul grow vast
As the circle of sand and alkali.
His soul extended and touched the sky,
His old life dropped as a dream that is past,        10
As the sand slipped off from the wagon wheel—
The shining sand from the band of steel—
While the far horizon widened and grew
Into something he dimly felt he knew,
And had always known, that had just come true.        15
His vision rested on ridges of sand,
And a far-off horseman who seemed to stand
On the edge of the world—in an orange glow
Rising to rose and a lavender tone,
With an early star in a turquoise band.        20
And his spirit sang like a taper slim,
As the slow wheels turned on the desert’s rim
Through the wind-swept stretches of sand and sky,
He had entered the desert to hide and fly,
But the spell of the desert had entered him.        25
Three men entered the desert alone.
One of them slept like a sack of stone,
One of them reached till he touched the sky.
The other one dreamed, while the hours went by
Of a girl at the bar of The Little Cyclone.        30

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