soul, as incorruptable as stone

800px-Big_Sur_Coast_California

there are transitional moments, spaces filled with
wildfire and earthquake and avalanche, yet wilderness
speaks more of the sun pouring his heart out in dapples
and of the paced stew of the ever-changing seasons,
the promise of rough footpaths alongside the lives of trees
and lonely lakes that mirror endless sky-play and always
those smart birds hitching free rides on thermal columns

how cherish-able is the insouciance of the wild, how prized
for its medicinal value, for its stringy-barked eucalyptus
and curly moss, the breathe of its purity in the tossing up
and carving out of shapely mountains and palisades and
high-principled stone obelisks rising from frothing seas
and from the evergreen stillness of the land, the wilderness ~

so reverent in its prayers, its songs of praise, they soar
tower-like, a marvel of primordial cathedrals spinning
past the cruciferous hallmark of hawk against the wide
and cloud-bedecked sky; ageless, these untamed places are
rock-solid sanity and tree anchored, feeding those who sit
one with them, who own the wilderness essence from the heart’s
unbroken core, finding their own soul as incorruptible as stone

Join us on The Bardo Group blog for Wilderness Week, hosted by Priscilla Galasso (scillagrace). Feel free to link in your own related work there using Mister Linky or by placing a link to your work in the comments section.

© 2014, poem, Jamie Dedes, All rights reserved; the photograph of Big Sur is in the public domain

“Wilderness” … for Wilderness Week … Carl Sandburg

(c) 2014 Jamie Dedes
(c) 2014 Jamie Dedes

There is a wolf in me … fangs pointed for tearing gashes … a red tongue for raw meat … and the hot lapping of blood—I keep this wolf because the wilderness gave it to me and the wilderness will not let it go.

There is a fox in me … a silver-gray fox … I sniff and guess … I pick things out of the wind and air … I nose in the dark night and take sleepers and eat them and hide the feathers … I circle and loop and double-cross.

There is a hog in me … a snout and a belly … a machinery for eating and grunting … a machinery for sleeping satisfied in the sun—I got this too from the wilderness and the wilderness will not let it go.

There is a fish in me … I know I came from salt-blue water-gates … I scurried with shoals of herring … I blew waterspouts with porpoises … before land was … before the water went down … before Noah … before the first chapter of Genesis.

There is a baboon in me … clambering-clawed … dog-faced … yawping a galoot’s hunger … hairy under the armpits … here are the hawk-eyed hankering men … here are the blond and blue-eyed women … here they hide curled asleep waiting … ready to snarl and kill … ready to sing and give milk … waiting—I keep the baboon because the wilderness says so.

There is an eagle in me and a mockingbird … and the eagle flies among the Rocky Mountains of my dreams and fights among the Sierra crags of what I want … and the mockingbird warbles in the early forenoon before the dew is gone, warbles in the underbrush of my Chattanoogas of hope, gushes over the blue Ozark foothills of my wishes—And I got the eagle and the mockingbird from the wilderness.

O, I got a zoo, I got a menagerie, inside my ribs, under my bony head, under my red-valve heart—and I got something else: it is a man-child heart, a woman-child heart: it is a father and mother and lover: it came from God-Knows-Where: it is going to God-Knows-Where—For I am the keeper of the zoo: I say yes and no: I sing and kill and work: I am a pal of the world: I came from the wilderness.

- Carl Sandburg
This poem is in the public domain

640px-Carl_Sandburg_NYWTSA quintessentially American writer, Carl Sandburg (1878-1967) is probably best known for his poetry and his biography of Abraham Lincoln, which was required high school reading in my day. He won three Pulitzers, two for poetry and one for the biography. (This Sandburg portrait is from the Library of Congress World Telegram collection.)

Join us on The Bardo Group blog for Wilderness Week, hosted by Priscilla Galasso (scillagrace). Feel free to link in your own related work there using Mister Linky or by placing a link to your work in the comments section.

the smell of wood, the scorch of fire …

stumpsthis rough-barked sequoia stump, sitting in majesty
in its coastal home, victim of wildfire, burned down
to its gnarly roots, its nicks, holes and char, eons
of scars, life seemingly cut off, goddess snake alive
inside the concentric circles, the smell of wood and
scorch of fire, at the verge of our infinity, in its truth ~

pristine

rugged

pulsing

haunted by the geometry of limbs, the calculus of green,
the algebraic eloquence of a world within a world  ~

So present.

So essential.

So primal.

it sings to itself in the marrow of our bones

- Jamie Dedes

Victoria Slotto’s Writers’ Fourth Wednesday inspiration is the “Wilderness,” in preparation for Wilderness Week starting on Sunday, August 31. The wilderness around here is rich in Sequoia. Hence this poem. Please join us at The Bardo Group blog today and link in your own work. Details are HERE.

© 2014, poem, Jamie Dedes, All rights reserved
Photo credit ~Bay Nature.org: “The Bay Nature Institute, based in Berkeley, California, is dedicated to educating the people of the San Francisco Bay Area about, and celebrating the beauty of, the surrounding natural world. We do so with the aim of inspiring residents to explore and preserve the diverse and unique natural heritage of the region, and of nurturing productive relationships among the many organizations and individuals working towards these same goals.” Read more HERE.

Done . . . and not done yet . . .

Jamie Dedes:

A poem of mine and a sweet touching video from Taiwan on The Bardo Group blog …

You will have to link through to the original post to view the video. 

Originally posted on THE BARDO GROUP:

photo-37-1I watched it all over my friend’s dear shoulder,
that time of living while dying and celebrating ~
like a garden snake ~ the shedding of the skin,
the detritus of material man with its hungers and
wild, woody creative soul, sketching ruby-jeweled
memories in sand to be blown like a Tibetan mandala
across Timelessness . . .

while he,

lone monk,

gripped

by systems on systems of hospital wiring, billing,
approvals, and laws around funerals and burials,
estates, plans, and proposals for headstones and
the where, when, and how of a memorial service,
the left-overs of his life to be sorted, stashed, stored
or sent to the right people in the right places.

Done!

… as though there had been nothing. No one.

- Jamie Dedes

♥♥♥♥

NOT DONE YET

Dedicated to everyone who is living with dying. That would be all of us.

A Taiwanese advertisement based on a true story.

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