Thursday, January 31, 2008

Thursday Poem - How Long?

How long does it take to make the woods?
As long as it takes to make the world.
The woods is present as the world is, the presence
of all its past and of all its time to come.
It is always finished, it is always being made, the act
of its making forever greater than the act of its destruction.
It is a part of eternity for its end and beginning
belong to the end and beginning of all things,
the beginning lost in the end, the end in the beginning.

What is the way to the woods, how do you go there?
By climbing up through the six days' field,
kept in all the body's years, the body's
sorrow, weariness, and joy. By passing through
the narrow gate on the far side of that field
where the pasture grass of the body's life gives way
to the high, original standing of the trees.
By coming into the shadow, the shadow
of the grace of the strait way's ending,
the shadow of the mercy of light.

Why must the gate be narrow?
Because you cannot pass beyond it burdened.
To come into the woods you must leave behind
the six days' world, all of it, all of its plans and hopes.
You must come without weapon or tool, alone,
expecting nothing, remembering nothing,
into the ease of sight, the brotherhood of eye and leaf.

Wendell Berry
(Sabbaths 1985, V from A Timbered Choir)


Ulli and Sheryl said...

Beautiful image.

R.Dress said...

How Long,,,

Is the answer with in the question.
For me the narrow gate on the far side of the field is silence. I have found that only through silence can nature truly revel her self no matter if your toting weapon or tool, or the burdens of life.
Gorgeous work!

K Allrich said...

You really do get some serious snow in your neck of the woods, Dear Heart. That is a gorgeous image.

Endment said...

Thanks for the reminder - I can see again
Burdens seem to fall with your remarkable images -

Rain Trueax said...

that is such a beautiful photo. lush with the snowy landscape. We get very little snow in my part of the PNW; so I love to come here and drink my fill of your landscapes.

Rain Trueax said...

have you ever thought of turning some of these almost monochromatic photos into black and white? Just to experiment, I did that with this one and it gained power. The shapes, the composition are powerful and b&w enhanced that power. I won't take your photo but just wanted to experiment with it to see. I bet others would be the same way. Your photos of the snow are very geometric and b&w emphasizes that to me anyway.

Shelli said...

beautiful photo and poem.

Weeping Sore said...

Suddenly, everywhere I look these days, I see time passing, the world spinning, the rivers flowing down to the seas.

I seem recently, to have cracked some secret code in Nature and learned that time is the cure to everything bad, while everything good goes on...