It is an hour flight—up the hill, down the hill, a bag of peanuts and a pail of water. The descent never changes.
From the window the ground is dry and chapped, breaking in the creases, and the heat rises above it in thick translucent waves. The view is always the same, a sky clear and blue, an endless land that is cracked and growing blurry.
From the curb it is more of the same, but now you can feel it and the shirt stuck to your back. The parking lot is checkered by empty spaces and clusters of cars haggling for shade. A tree grows in Tucson and the locals bow beneath it. The dust is quick upon them.
This is where I came from, a leap from a postcard across the pages of a scrapbook, faded equally from time and sun. I don’t miss much, but for twilight streaking from mountaintop to mountain on rays of pink and amber, and then nights too warm beneath a quilt of stars and friendly margaritas.
And some of the people even more so.
It is Friday morning, and I have returned to bury my grandfather. It seems I only fly home for funerals.