Wealth

no accumulation endures — if you believe

that mountains live forever, think again

look beneath your feet! each time

you cross a stream you receive a silver coin

the coin of the only realm that matters—

 

let this be your treasury — you can never

spend it, not in the time it will take

for these mountains to wash down to the sea.

true wealth is standing barefoot in a cold river

with no need to count anything

the last true place

I recently had the immense good fortune to spend a week hiking the Kungsleden trail in Swedish Lapland. Well above the arctic circle, the sense of space is almost incalculable. Everywhere is running water, clean enough to drink as it must have been in most of the world at one time.  What we have done to our poor world…

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the last true place

we

infect this planet

like a virus, mutating

to fill every

niche

where

have all the giants

gone?

do

they sleep,

or were they swept away by our

speed?

are

there still fairies?

surely, there must still be

fairies?

sit

here

by this stream

on the very roof of the

world

the

midsummer sun is soft and everlasting

sleep and nonsleep are

one

listen

to the voices of the

waters

to the deep moaning of the

stones

these

are old voices

voices

that precede

words

that speak of a truth underlying

memory

this

was once your

language

the

voice of your own beating

heart

these

are the vanishing

voices

of the last true place on

earth

© J.A. Fink  2013

old wood

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old wood

this is a country

of sharp stones and small

flowers, deep snows

and dry summers.

we sing here

but we’ve learned

to sing softly, melding

our voices with birds

and the wind

with the moans of the earth

as she turns.

here lies the old wood

broken and bent

here is the teacher

who’s weathered the storm

who’s learned to stay low

and to split without dying

here is the teacher

who knows to be still

for seasons on end

awaiting the bloom

come to us father

bring us your body

now splintered and stained

bring us your dust

and your flowerless branch

come to us father

and sing us of time

so that we might sing

to our children.

© J.A. Fink, July 2013

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