Wednesday, August 5, 2009

time, place, perspective

East Vs West

we’re back within the folds of Eastern woods and mountain,
away from the brazen simplicity of the West
where the mountains are young and taller, the climate harsher,
the trees there huddle together more with their own kind,
and do not overwhelm the grasslands with their shade,
distance opens up, large animals thrive and can often be easily seen,

these older, warmer, less towering mountains back East
hide their worlds with fold after fold of varied forest,
different tree after tree all jumbled together
like the many varied faces in crowds along a big city’s streets,

out West we could watch grizzlies miles away atop a high ridge,
here a black bear can be 50 feet away and we can’t see him,

one aspect of growing-up is that black & white
often learn to reach toward each other in shades of grey,
and something like that happens in these woods
where clarity of contrast transforms into subtlety and nuance,
diversity explodes in number and type,
reality contracts into the nearby,
humidity hazes what views can be found
as if an impressionist filters the eye,

every moment can reveal the divine,
it’s our charge to slow ourselves, to enlarge ourselves,
to take time and open our selves
so that we can hear the older truths
that we could not hear in the brashness of our youth,

so much depends on one millipede scuttering along
and making its own world.

by Henry Walker
July 28, ‘09

1 comment:

Ike Walker said...

I think this is an astute comparison, and matches my experience in Wyoming and Tennessee.

The "brazen simplicity" is particularly well phrased.