This poem was written by Kendra Heimbuck (Belfast 2011-2012, Tucson 2012-2013) during the spring of 2013 on a retreat to Cascabel. This yearly desert sojourn has become a marker of the Tucson YAV experience where volunteers spend 1-2 nights in solitude in the Arizona desert before coming back together.

Heart is pumping,

Flashing dreams.

Mind is wandering, internal screams.

Mysterious surroundings,

It’s yourself and just you.

Your mind will go crazy with nothing to do.

The environment familiars,

You move around and explore.

Perhaps your soul might find what it’s looking for.

Every blow of the wind,

Every breath of fresh air.

You’re thankful for this time that is quite rare.

Your soul comes alive.

The Spirit is all around.

You can sense it with every sight, smell, and sound.

Alone in the wilderness.

A frightening time for me?

At times yes, but mostly just free!

Photo by Luke Rembold

Photo by Luke Rembold