I can never let Lughnasadah pass without remembering this poem, by Mary Oliver, which saw me through one of my most difficult days:
I listen and look
under the sun’s brass and even
into the moonlight, but I can’t hear
anything, I can’t see anything–
not the pale roots digging down, nor the green stalks muscling up,
nor the leaves
deepening the damp powers,
nor the tassels making,
nor the shucks, nor the cobs.
the leafy fields
grow taller and thicker–
green gowns lofting up in the night,
showered with silk.
And so, every summer,
I fail as a witness, seeing nothing–
I am deaf too
to the tick of the leaves,
the tapping of downwardness of the banyan feet–
all of it
beyond any seeable proof, or hearable hum.
And, therefore, let the immeasurable come.
Let the unknowable touch the buckle of my spine.
Let the wind turn in the trees
And the mystery hidden in the dirt
swing through the air.
How could I look at anything in this world
and tremble, and grip my hands over my heart?
What should I fear?
in the leafy green ocean
the honeycomb of the corn’s beautiful body
is sure to be there.
I live in the MidAtlantic. The leafy green ocean of the corn’s beautiful body has yet to fail me. May it be so for you.