The face of her was the burnt black of iron oxidizing marred by natives keeping track of seasons--such banal meanings attributed to these glyphs. Hidden walls tucked further into canyons off the trails. Following the swirls leads you to a tall precipice whose flat top is the perfect perch for those wanting a lay of the land. A big whirl with a wind-carved bowel in its center. Two smooth grey stones lay inside.
I mean some kids probably had them in their pockets.
That was quite the scramble for kids don't you think?
Okay, geologists who have a penchant for punishment like you do.
She knew not to bring him here, he always complained.
Look why don't you take the car and head back. I'll hitch a ride back to the rangers station, and I'm sure someone will take me home.
How much longer do you plan on being here?
I want to see the moon rise. It's the blood moon.
The lunar eclipse is on the other side of the world, you know.
I thought we don't talk about eclipses.
That set him off. You're right I don't want to be here.
Didn't think so.
Sensing there wasn't much else to say, he started heading back.
She waited for his leaving to dissolve into silence before she began her search in earnest.
Three glyphs. Man, moon, and man with squiggles. She found this combination six times on miniature mesas made for two. Scanning the landscape, she saw the other landmark she was looking for. A broad flat dark face of the wall, the size of a small projection screen that was untouched by man.
She always found it odd that such prime petroglyph real estate was left raw and waiting. A virgin with no stories to tell. Not in this valley of fire, hear the sand whispered myths of heat and chases. The wind carves caves of sitting stillness. Life is teaming, surviving, frozen, waiting for rain, and hidden.
Her grandmother said it was on such walls that the shadow people play.