nthposition online magazine

Walking a path between dark hornbeams & Lights in the desert

by Paul Kingsnorth

[ poetry - october 06 ]

Walking a path between dark hornbeams

Walking a path between dark hornbeams,
I am taken and guided
Into the part of the woods where paths start
And stop and start again,
And are too small for human feet.

All begins here, and happens,
And none of it can be written.
Trees can be axed to the ground but do not die;
Brambles burnt over wide acres
To rise again in spring.
Eggs can be taken from nests and drained,
And others will replace them.

And you: how can you think you will win this?

 

Lights in the desert

Beatty, Nevada

It is a dozen miles to the bald mountain
Where, in green, something burns.
More, maybe, to the dead valleys in the east.
In white, there, something was born.

In the skies you feel it; in the wind,
Were there any, and in the lying clarity
Of a winter darkness it hangs,
Seeking a depth to descend to.

Something alien and unblinking
Climbs through the mesquite in the yellow dawn,
Sees you, alone on the white road,
And stares.