1997, Out of San Diego

Arcing up in a graceful S,
We stretch towards the sun -- while below
The bay spreads out its deepest blue,
Scattering a thousand diamonds out to sea.

The city is graceful by the coast
Covering every finger curling out;
Neither mold nor blot --
It is the land transformed,
The shining glory of a modern age.

Eastward.

So soon all buildings are left behind
Leaving roads dwindling one by one;
Now great mountains rise up
Warding man away by their rugged heights.

Yet still some remain.
Strands of grey wind up along ridges,
Here and there sits a single house --
Lonely, but proud,
Content with its open spaces.

Then the earth dries out
Turning green to brown;
Peaks slough down into washing sands.
The hand of man is wholly absent here --
When the sun drops beneath the land
Only the whistling of the wind remains.

Eastward.

Now below us
We see the works of centuries laid out;
The paths rushed down by drenching rain
Visited once a decade perhaps -- a thousand years ago.
Deeper than that the forms of jagged mountains
Pushing up from shifting sand;
And how much older still those hoary hills
Softened and rounded by the ages.

Night falls to the land,
Painting it slate then black;
But high above we enjoy a greater day,
Until that too fades, leaving us alone.

Shrouded in darkness, we carry on
Suspended in a netherworld,
Neither here nor there.

Time passes.

A glow appears in the distance,
Slowly spreading out -- until
Surrounding as far as the eye can see,
A carpet of softly sparkling jewels...
Pearls scattered, and in chains;
Emeralds and sapphires too --
Silent splendour beyond all imagining.

Here and there we spy some movement --
And along silver ribbons a stately motion:
A thousand thousand shining objects
Flowing like the blood in my veins.
A grand machine perhaps,
Order glorious in vast intricacy?

But the peace in my heart tells me more;
Now as the plane descends to land,
I know that we the Creators
Go to join the Life that we have made.


Next