Wednesday, May 30, 2007
This poem is an old one, the first in a seven-poem series I was commissioned by BYU to write for an International Horn Festival. The fellow commissioned to write the music never finished, so it was never performed. But I got paid, just the same!
The Great Bear slumbers
In a cave of stars,
The Little Bear, Aries the Ram.
The wind is a still sea.
The horned owl hangs
In chill air, feathers scarcely stirring.
He floats like a swimmer
Above the white bones of jackrabbits,
Over the winter burrows of field mice.
The mountains breathe
In the dark--a sleeping breath
Of hawk and fox,
Of wildcat and beaver.
The river is bleak, the shallows are ice.
Under the hill,
In a cave of granite and quartz-crystal
The black bear sleeps,
Patiently entombed in his deep
Let him sleep. Let them all sleep.
Let them savor the brown earth-smell
Of their dreams.
Let them cling to the dim runes
Let them range far, light-years distant.
Let them dream of spring,
Of moving water, of light,
Of the beautiful sons and daughters
Of air-dwellers and river-drifters
Let them dream.