Thursday, December 20, 2012

Spring Creek Prairie

I'm spending a few days before Christmas at National Audubon's Spring Creek Prairie located in Eastern Nebraska, near Lincoln, the state's capital. My friend A is the caretaker and she's graciously, generously opened her house to a weary traveller, me. It's glorious here. Last night it snowed a bit, but before flakes formed in the too warm air they fell as rain, then freezing rain the effect of which has encased little and big bluestem, switch grass, side oats, indian grass, and my favorite, needle-n-thread grass in sleeves of ice and tiny glassy droplets. Necklace, pearled-lace, these words blanch the beauty. The prairie luster has no comparison.

Michael Forsberg
The sofa is my bed and it's located just beyond a plate-glass window that opens onto rolling grasslands; that opens to the southeast; that opens to austere -- not simply austere the adjective -- but to austere itself. Muted hues bleed into one another as the sun rises, and a careful observer is able to see incremental changes as the light increases.

In my journey to discover what Gary Snyder has called no-self, I've been conceiving "nounless." More than discursive, prior to discursive and all encompassing, the no-self. Interconnectivity. Energy frequencies. Water.

The only thing a leaf eats is sunlight.

We place a log into the stove. It's a log. It is transformed. We accept its warmth.

Here's a poem I like by Robert Creeley

For Love,
By Robert Creeley

for Bobbie
Yesterday I wanted to
speak of it, that sense above   
the others to me
important because all

that I know derives
from what it teaches me.   
Today, what is it that   
is finally so helpless,

different, despairs of its own   
statement, wants to
turn away, endlessly
to turn away.

If the moon did not ...
no, if you did not
I wouldn’t either, but   
what would I not

do, what prevention, what   
thing so quickly stopped.   
That is love yesterday   
or tomorrow, not

now. Can I eat
what you give me. I
have not earned it. Must   
I think of everything

as earned. Now love also   
becomes a reward so
remote from me I have
only made it with my mind.

Here is tedium,
despair, a painful
sense of isolation and   
whimsical if pompous

self-regard. But that image   
is only of the mind’s
vague structure, vague to me   
because it is my own.

Love, what do I think
to say. I cannot say it.
What have you become to ask,   
what have I made you into,

companion, good company,   
crossed legs with skirt, or   
soft body under
the bones of the bed.

Nothing says anything   
but that which it wishes   
would come true, fears   
what else might happen in

some other place, some   
other time not this one.   
A voice in my place, an   
echo of that only in yours.

Let me stumble into
not the confession but   
the obsession I begin with   
now. For you

also (also)
some time beyond place, or   
place beyond time, no   
mind left to

say anything at all,
that face gone, now.
Into the company of love   
it all returns.

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