Tuesday, September 11, 2012

9/11: On The Beach

ON THE BEACH (Oct. 11th, 2001)

One month
after the world ended

The little island world we,
the privileged few, could pretend
was safe, forever, and righteous

The fallen towers,
fiery messengers
of unfathomable destruction yet to come.
Tourists walk barefoot
on the familiar beach.
They came here, I imagine,
as I have, not to forget,
but to remember.

To remember driftwood and high tide
a red dog and a yellow-haired child
as they enter the water -
their cries of goodly shock
and honest forevers
always new, always cold, always blue.

A white heron,
balanced in perfect equanimity
on one leg.
Wave forms overlay my feet
transparent hieroglyphs of infinity.
Her way of speaking.
Gaia.  Her manifest, unspoken words.

A brown man
lies beside the mossy cliff, spread-eagled
between sky and sea and land.

Sand sunk, leaf-molten,
blackberry thorn - into the green
toes, fingers, flesh
reaching into the green

redeeming Earth.
He is rooting himself.
He is taking himself back.

I lie down in grateful imitation, a stranger
in companionable human proximity,
sharing this rite of remembering.

I  see her now,  a girl
walking on this very beach
Yesterday, and 30 years ago.
sourcing the one who lives here
        A river Goddess with no name.
She has made a mermaid offering
of sticks and sand and seaweed.

Companions arrive, offer shells,
and return to Berkeley.
To Vietnam, the Cold War,
the Berlin Wall,
the war, the wall,
the war, the walls.
The war,
and the summer of love.

("the revolution will not be televised")

A generation to end war, raise hell, raise consciousness,
raise Atlantis, and raise the new and Golden Age

("the revolution will not be televised")

How did we get here
from there?

I call you back, girl.
I call you back.
I am at the other end
of this life now
your feet touch mine
beneath the sand,
I follow them
on the beach

Your sand prayers
ring here still
The Earth
is my witness.

Lauren Raine (2001)


Valerianna said...

The last few lines shine for me...

Lauren Raine said...

Thanks so much.......

Trish and Rob MacGregor said...

Wow, Lauren. This is a truly powerful and transformative poem.