And it blows all the time. Everywhere is far to go
So there's no hurry at all, and no reason for going.
In Texas there's so much space words have a way
Of getting lost in the silence before they're spoken
So people hang on a long time to what they have to say;
And when they say it the silence is not broken,
But it absorbs the words and slowly gives them
Over to miles of white-gold plains and gray-green hills,
And they are part of that silence that outlives them.
Nothing moves fast in Texas except the windmills
And the hawk that rises up with a clatter of wings.
(Nothing more startling here than sudden motion,
Everything is so still.) But the earth slowly swings
In time like a great swelling never-ending ocean,
And the houses that ride the tawny waves get smaller
As you get near them because you see them then
Under the whole sky, and the whole sky is so much taller
With the lid off than a million towers built by men.
After a while you can only see what's at horizon's edge,
And you are stretched with looking so far instead of near,
So you jump, you are startled by a blown piece of sedge;
You feel wide-eyed and ruminative as a ponderous steer.
In Texas you look at America with a patient eye.
You want everything to be sure and slow and set in relation
To immense skies and earth that never ends. You wonder why
People must talk and strain so much about a nation
That lives in spaces vaster than a man's dream and can go
Five hundred miles through wilderness, meeting only the hawk
And the dead rabbit in the road. What happens must be slow,
Must go deeper even than hand's work or tongue's talk,
Must rise out of the flesh like sweat after a hard day,
Must come slowly, in its own time, in its own way.
May Sarton was the pen name of Eleanore Marie Sarton (May 3, 1912 - July 16, 1995), an American poet, memoirist, and novelist. She was born in Belgium but her family moved to Boston in 1915 and she lived in the United States for the rest of her life. She was a prolific writer of poetry, fiction and nonfiction.
In his speech accepting the Democratic nomination for president last Thursday, Vice-President Biden quoted from a work by the great Irish poet Seamus Heaney. I was not familiar with the poem and so I had to look it up. It is from a work entitled The Cure at Troy which was an adaptation by Heaney, written in verse, of Sophocles' play, Philoctetes . Philoctetes was a Greek master archer who was abandoned on a desert island by his fellow soldiers and countrymen and was later asked by the Greeks to return to fight in the Trojan War. The work was published in 1991 and in writing it, Heaney evidently was thinking of "The Troubles" in Northern Ireland. It seems to fit equally well our own troubles of today. It is a poem for all times. Verses from The Cure at Troy by Seamus Heaney Human beings suffer They torture one another, They get hurt and get hard. No poem or play or song Can fully right a wrong Inflicted and endured. The innocent in gaols Beat on their bars together.
I was introduced to the writing of C.J. Box through my local library's Mystery Book Club. Open Season , the first in Box's Joe Pickett series, was the club's selection for reading in June. Although I didn't get a chance to read it in time for the meeting, the discussion of it made me curious and I put it on my to-be-read list. I'm glad I finally got around to it this week. Box has created an enormously appealing character in Joe Pickett. A Wyoming game warden, Joe is a devoted family man with two young daughters and a pregnant wife when we first meet him. He and his family are able to barely scrape by financially on the meager salary of a state employee (Been there, done that!) , but Joe is a happy man, because he's living his dream. Being a game warden was what he always wanted to be. Not only Joe but his whole family are lovingly drawn by Box. We get to know them well and to like them and want them not just to endure but to triumph. Seven-year-old Sherid
I dip into poetry throughout the week. I do it quite randomly, without a plan or agenda. But I am often astonished to find that the poem I have randomly chosen is exactly the one that I needed at that particular moment. And so it was when I landed on this poem by Mary Oliver a few days ago. She writes: it is a serious thing just to be alive on this fresh morning in the broken world. Yes, exactly. Invitation by Mary Oliver Oh do you have time to linger for just a little while out of your busy and very important day for the goldfinches that have gathered in a field of thistles for a musical battle, to see who can sing the highest note, or the lowest, or the most expressive of mirth, or the most tender? Their strong, blunt beaks drink the air as they strive melodiously not for your sake and not for mine and not for the sake of winning but for sheer delight and gratitude – believe us, they say, it is a serious thing just to be alive on this fresh m