The three of us are seated outside in the dark. My white haired grandmother has lived in this adobe house since before I was born and in all the times I’ve visited we’ve never done this. During the day the city fortifies itself with modernity (gas stations, air-conditioned office buildings and laundromats) but at night the wild desert creeps in and winds its way through sleepy subdivisions and empty parking lots. It inks through the stones in the dry arroyos first and then spreads through the breeze in the paloverde branches and in the dreams of the sleeping quail. The old saguaros welcome the desert with their limbs lifted to the sky, just as they always have. We can feel it approaching and we welcome it too. The desert moves in us in its own way, turning our conversation to the things that are inevitably spoken about in reverential night gatherings—memories mainly, and those subtle, intangible intuitions that can never quite be translated into words.