Monday, 23 of October of 2017

Tag » theology

Philip Levine – Our Valley

Miro Majorek - Pacheco Pass

mw2.google
 
 
 
We don’t see the ocean, not ever, but in July and August
when the worst heat seems to rise from the hard clay
of this valley, you could be walking through a fig orchard
when suddenly the wind cools and for a moment
you get a whiff of salt, and in that moment you can almost
believe something is waiting beyond the Pacheco Pass,
something massive, irrational, and so powerful even
the mountains that rise east of here have no word for it.

You probably think I’m nuts saying the mountains
have no word for ocean, but if you live here
you begin to believe they know everything.
They maintain that huge silence we think of as divine,
David_D_Alleea silence that grows in autumn when snow falls
slowly between the pines and the wind dies
to less than a whisper and you can barely catch
your breath because you’re thrilled and terrified.

You have to remember this isn’t your land.
It belongs to no one, like the sea you once lived beside
and thought was yours. Remember the small boats
that bobbed out as the waves rode in, and the men
who carved a living from it only to find themselves
carved down to nothing. Now you say this is home,
so go ahead, worship the mountains as they dissolve in dust,
wait on the wind, catch a whiff of salt, call it our life.

Philip Levine, a Poet of Grit, Sweat & Labor, Dies at 87


Philip Wright – High Plains


 
 
 
This is the land of the Indian Paintbrush,
a place with more centuries than the days
of Man.
At sunset there falls onto this land
a wonderful desolation.
Slanting sunlight turns arroyos to black
currents in a sea of tall, yellow grass,
and gold dust swirls on silver winds
to weave the strands of night.
It is a glimpse of eternity:
a coveted moment of awareness between
the Within and unconfined Beyond.
I sit high upon an outcrop pondering
a death worth mentioning.

Not long ago across this vast plain hunted men
touched by the pathos of their quarry.
With ritual and travail they purified themselves
in preparation of the chase.
For in the dark reality of life eating life
the blood of sustenance must be cleansed
in reverence.
They hunted in awe.
They killed with remorse.
And they celebrated success with thanksgiving,
not to God,
but to the animals they killed.

Then came a migration of humanity
disconnected from earth,
singing the metaphor of Genesis,
and taking what cannot be owned.
These also hunted.
But there was no reverence in the eyes peering
over the white man’s rifles.

The migration continues with an army
of hunters.
They shoot from trucks into herds
of confused antelope.
At night they lift a beer and toast the hunt.
But no one speaks of the young doe
gut-shot and running until tripping
in her own entrails.
Lying now in the dust.
Gone with the sun.

Philip Wright


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