The City – Lent Thirty-Three

Nancy Eckels

Nancy Eckels

The wilderness
is not neighbor to the city
Out there where tall trees
lift their spires to the stars
where generations lie composting
undisturbed for centuries
where spirits of the dead watch
curiously through the ancient moss
It is not wilderness by accident
In there where mercury vapor lights
turn the darkness a pale blue
where the air smells of exhaust
the dirty alleys of stale urine
where the prosperous live above
in uncanny lofts without staircases
City is community without conscience
The buffer between wilderness & city
is this patchwork of dreams & failures
Out here lie the pastures of last year’s sheep
quartered now by surveyor’s stakes
where barns birth nothing more than bats
flying their bizarre formations at dusk
where orchards that once bloomed
now lie overgrown with thistle & thorn
The last refuge of feral cats
Everyone’s Lenten journey
moves from someplace wild
to someplace depraved
through some now vacant place
It is here Above all here
that the sentimentality of following
begins at last to sort itself out from
the reality of arriving Where we are going
is a place from which we cannot
from which we will not return


About Peter Notehelfer

I'm a retired people person who now finds the time to watch the little details of the world without worrying about being watched by anyone . . . I live on an Island north of Seattle with my wife named Ellen, a yellow dog named McGee, a yellow cat named Gatzby, and four fine chickens . . . I read fiction, bake bread, smoke salmon, and fish whenever the weather allows . . . Oh, and yes, I try to write a poem every day simply to avoid senility!
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2 Responses to The City – Lent Thirty-Three

  1. kiwiskan says:

    nor want to…

    Liked by 1 person

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