the commons: air, water, habitable earth

“take back, like the night,
that which is shared,”
like the cool become cold
under a scattering of wild stars.
like our breath , held
against the now
that explodes on our screens
stealing light from our days
and stars from our night
until no more –
say no more
no more
throw open our windows
our doors – step outside
allow the night cool
to pry breath
like a sigh, like a howl
like a bird from our lips –
watch it take flight
mist swirl breaths in the night
swimming among the stars
becoming air
becoming ours
becoming shared.

“take back, like the night,
that which is shared,”
like a thirst, like a longing,
like the river. like soft lips
touching water reflecting fur
and eyes and hooves
and quiver flesh hide –
still. more still than
we have names for
like a sip, like a thirst
like a longing –
like the tree whose branches
flow river catchment from the sky,
like our bodies
holy water
wholly shared

“take back, like the night,
that which is shared,”
like soil in our palm
holding seedling green tendril
like a gift, soft
like a home built slowly
like a tree being
both shelter and sheltered
like the earth
that grows our bones
that become the earth
shared.


Quotation from Gary Snyder in The Practice of the Wild.

In response to Brendan at earthweal’s and weekly challenge: THE COMMONS.

Find his excellent essay here.

https://earthweal.com/2022/04/25/earthweal-weekly-challenge-the-commons/

13 thoughts on “the commons: air, water, habitable earth

  1. “…under a scattering of wild stars”….so beautiful. The longing…….we feel it…..I love the hope in that soil, the seedling green tendril. Just beautiful.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I love how you turn Snyder’s phrase into a mantra, taking back, like the night, the commons everywhere alive to the living eye and lips and heart. You know and sing the place(s) so well. A lovely autumn poem from across the globe (here early summer blossoms) and so good to hear from you. I had wondered how you were faring with all that rain in South Africa.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks Brendan. Yes it is decidedly autumn here – a crisp 9°C this morning although it will climb back up to around 20° through the day. Thanks for you concern – all is well here – we have had some good gentle rain. Nothing like what has been faced by the ihabitants of Durban, Kwazulu-Natal an surrounds (which is about 1100km north east of here but also on the Indian Ocean). Thanks for the prompt – did a little reading around the Commons, really interesting. Happy Blossoming!

      Liked by 1 person

  3. ” . . . stealing light from our days
    and stars from our night
    until no more –
    say no more
    no more
    throw open our windows
    our doors – step outside . . .”
    Indeed, and what you offer instead is the miracle of recovery.

    Liked by 1 person

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