Wednesday, November 21, 2012

How the First Human Man Learned to Lift the Planet

author's note:

This seemed a good poem for our Thanksgiving holiday.


When the man asked the fish
and the deer and the bird
to lay down their lives
so he could live
they said:

"We are only animals, so
  we must lay down our lives!"

Then because he was a man
he asked the tree, the wheat--
he asked the stream

and they laid down their lives
to give him a roof, a crop,
and a dam.

Because the man was a man
he believed he deserved
this blessing of the Earth:
because the man was a man
he did not yet understand

that humans must raise the world again
whenever the world lays down its life--
    humans must bless this Earth
    in order to earn its blessing

and because he did not
support his life support
eventually, the man
had to lay down--
he lay down on his back

but fortunately
even a wounded Earth
can heal a dying man...
thus, after many painful nights
the man rose again

and since a human, in rising
sees the same world differently
the human man could see
what he had not seen previously:

"Because I'm so small and weak
  I must lift and lift again
  all that has laid down
  its strong life for my sake!"

Fortunately, even a wounded man
can heal what he has wounded...

even a wounded human being
can remember how this strong lifting
will earn for him--will earn for her
the great gift of this Earth's blessing.

© 2012, Michael R. Patton
searching for the new mythology

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