The impetus for the entirety of the history of mythology may be the inconceivably vast cosmic overhead. Despite rational scientific advances, the cosmic remains out of reach. The most plausible entry points into its emptiness, are found in the emptiest of places. The desert is one such place. The emptiness provided by a desert backdrop acts as a blank slate on which to construct if not an actual model of what lies beyond, then at least an imagined one. This thesis is an exploration of some of the expressions that have emerged out of the delicate, dry spaces of the American west. By way of prehistoric architecture at Chaco Canyon in New Mexico, land art of the Great Basin Desert, and desert fiction, it confronts the potentialities of the desert as a stage for cosmic reconciliation.