Thursday, August 29, 2013

Thursday Poem - Directions (excerpt)

The best time is late afternoon
when the sun strobes through
the columns of trees as you are hiking up,
and when you find an agreeable rock
to sit on, you will be able to see
the light pouring down into the woods
and breaking into the shapes and tones
of things and you will hear nothing
but a sprig of birdsong or the leafy
falling of a cone or nut through the trees,
and if this is your day you might even
spot a hare or feel the wing-beats of geese
driving overhead toward some destination.

But it is hard to speak of these things
how the voices of light enter the body
and begin to recite their stories
how the earth holds us painfully against
its breast made of humus and brambles
how we who will soon be gone regard
the entities that continue to return
greener than ever, spring water flowing
through a meadow and the shadows of clouds
passing over the hills and the ground
where we stand in the tremble of thought
taking the vast outside into ourselves.

Billy Collins


Tabor said...

Oh, these days I am so very far away from this kind of peace. I am treading water...not yet swimming to shore...soon.

Guy said...

Hi Cate

I love Collins I heard him give a talk a few years ago which was exciting and I was just reading his interview in the Paris Review. This poem seems a bit more serious than many of his poems.

Thanks Guy

Anonymous said...

How beautiful--it made my eyes well up.