What to Read: Wild Geese by Wendell Berry

A friend posted an excerpt of this poem on Facebook on Earth Day and it really made me take a breath and look up from my screens. I hope it does the same for you. What we need is here.

The Wild Geese
Wendell Berry

Horseback on Sunday morning,
harvest over, we taste persimmon
and wild grape, sharp sweet
of summer’s end. In time’s maze 
over fall fields, we name names
that went west from here, names
that rest on graves. We open
a persimmon seed to find the tree
that stands in promise,
pale, in the seed’s marrow.
Geese appear high over us,
pass, and the sky closes. Abandon,
as in love or sleep, holds
them to their way, clear,
in the ancient faith: what we need
is here. And we pray, not
for new earth or heaven, but to be
quiet in heart, and in eye
clear. What we need is here.

From The Collected Poems of Wendell Berry, 1957-1982


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