07/07/2019     My mind seemed vacant of inspiration these past few weeks, occupied by vapid use of social media, cell phone games, and gaggle.  As of July 1, the extent of my FB commentary will be the “like” button if a post enamors me to the point of any response.  I must escape the numb-nothingness of the “web”, that enticingly laced latticework entrapping so many into a world of colorless blah.  In efforts to retrack my imagining, I reached for an old friend, a turquoise book entitled Poems That Will Change Your Life, where a verse by Vachel Lindsay caught my seeking eye:

 

“I Want To Go Wandering”

I want to go wandering.  Who shall declare

I will regret if I dare?

To the rich days of age—

To some mid-afternoon—

A wide fenceless prairie,

A lonely old tune,

Ant-hills and sunflowers,

And sunset too soon.

Behind the brown mountain

The sun will go down;

I shall climb, I shall climb,

To the sumptuous crown;

To the rocks of the summit,

And find some strange things:–

Some echo of echoes

When the thunder-wind sings;

Old Spanish necklaces,

Indian rings,

Or a feeble old eagle

With great, dragging wings.

He may leave me and soar,

But if he shall die,

I shall bury him deep

While the thunder-winds cry.

And there, as the last of my earth-nights go:

What is the thing I shall know?

With a feather cast off from his wings

I shall write, be it revel or psalm,

Or whisper of redwood, or cypress, or palm,

The treasure of dream that he brings.

The soul of the eagle will call.

Whether he lives or he dies—

The cliff and the prairie call,

The sage-brush and starlight sing.

And the songs of my far-away Sangamon call

From the plume of the bird of the Rockies,

And midnight’s omnipotent wing—

The last of my earth-nights will ring

With cries from a far haunted river,

And all of my wandering,

Wandering,

  Wandering,

    Wandering…(201-02).

 

Sitting with this poem brought realization – think required; imagination required; digging for information required.  Like “Sangamon.”  Huh?  A small village in Ampara located within the Eastern Province of Sri Lanka.  A rock plateau – a dilapidated stupa (Buddhist monument that once contained sacred relics) – the remains of a tsunami destroyed lighthouse.  And I was wandering, truly thinking – the aged eagle? An omnipotent wing?  Inspiration without emoji.  Thank you, Lord – Your world in its tangled simplicity truly is a great place to wander, be the roam real or shared because I “learned a book.”            submitted by Dave Smith