Sunrise Over the USA

for Barbara Mor

In place of the old dream
and the old lies,
I wish for my country of origin
a new story,
one that goes like this:

We rode roughshod,
we drove pedal to the metal,
we blew our own cylinders.
We squeezed the life from all
we could lay hands on,
converted our kill into currency,
bowed low before the greenback god we made.

Then — an inch from extinction —
in the midst of brawling, bawling,
blowing each other away,
we woke from our nightmares.
Watched the sun rise.
Said this is a good day to live.

We started to share food
and keep house.

It was astonishing
how quickly the tall-grass prairie,
intricate forest that bends with the wind,
grew back.
Astonishing how quickly the milkweed pods shot up
and the monarchs laid ever more eggs on them
and the great butterfly migration strengthened.
Astonishing when legions of Canada geese flew south again,
barking and writing long flat V’s in the sky.

We woke,
and the earth under our feet
decided to live.

It was that definitive,
that clear a turning.

− Harriet Ann Ellenberger, February 2012

Note: “Sunrise Over the USA” was first published, with working notes, on Return to Mago, 1 October 2012.

Advertisements

Published by

Harriet Ann Ellenberger

writer; featured contributor to "Return to Mago" and advisor to Mago Academy and Mago Books; advisor to "Trivia: Voices of Feminism"

5 thoughts on “Sunrise Over the USA”

    1. If I knew how I wrote poems, I’d have a lot more of them written. They bubble up occasionally out of masses of journal entries. This is not an energy-efficient way to get a poem, and it leaves me with mounds of written-on paper that I can’t figure out what to do with. There’s GOT to be an easier way.

      .

      Like

      1. I don’t believe there is a direct route to poems… part of their mystery to me is that they bubble up and if not caught in time sink back into whatever world they arise from

        Like

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s