I’ve been reading Alice Walker’s latest collection of essays, The Cushion in the Road: Meditation and Wandering as the Whole World Awakens to Being in Harm’s Way 2013, and find myself contemplating her musings well after I have put down the text. Keeping my nose out of Walker’s text proves challenging, and I am already a bit saddened that I am coming to its end.
Nevertheless, while tiresomely driving to Miami yesterday morning, I noticed the sky, the trees, and the Earth around me in a manner–not quite different from other ways I have witnessed the Earth before–but definitely in a manner that considered Walker’s meditation and wandering about Nature and human being’s exploitation and raping of Her. I thought deeply and purposely about the Earth I was witnessing during my drive–and my thoughts, mingled with Walker’s meditations and wanderings–generated the following poem:
6 a.m. Traveling Alligator Alley
Riding into periwinkle skies
I marvel at tree tops tilting toward cherry blossomed horizons
outlined in an orange blaze
that foreshadows sun’s morning rising.
Heavy machines interrupt quiet beginnings
and intoxicate Earth with their presence:
are as much a part of the landscape as wired fences
that keep swamps and shrubs from touching asphalt.
Suspended between man and Nature
I center myself in gospel music
that carries me all the way home.