Among Twenty Snowy Mountains.
Big-bellied ogres curled up in the sunlight
repel the terrors of the night.
Crossing a single bridge into a village
shall far out pass the power of human telling
of any misery in the sound of the wind
when disappointment, grief and fear are gone
in a repetitiousness of men and flies
grant heaven’s joy to me, O bright heaven’s sun.
Yet (in) the absence of the imagination
days of man are like grass as the wind passes over, it goes.
They were those that would have wept to step barefoot into reality
when in strange and awful strife met together, death and life.
They were those from the wilderness of stars that had expected more
and their glad hearts with holy rapture burn(ed).
The leaf that has fallen from the branches of the forsythia
tell(s) the world the good news story.
At the edge of the shadow
awake and rise from the dead.
I know no magic trees, no balmy boughs
by whom the work of truth is done.
And I reach to the shore of the sea,
grant us to live, from death set free
the luscious and impeccable fruit of life;
the stars shine only in darkness.
The honey of heaven, may or may not come
when life away is flying.
Lines from Wallace Stevens ‘The Palm at the End of the Mind’ and ‘Collected Poems’
and from early 19th century and earlier, ‘Hymns – Old and New ed. by Kevin Mayhew et al.