Saturday, May 01, 2010

NaPoWriMo #25: outside/inside

I'm going to cheat a little bit by doing what I did last year—that is, finishing up NaPoWriMo a little bit into May.

This poem came from a prompt at the poetry workshop I went to today (more about that later). We were given a poem called "The Edge of Tomorrow," by a poet named Winton Weyopuk, Jr. and asked to use its framework as a jumping off point for our own poem. Essentially, Weyopuk takes external details from the landscape around him and then compares them to what's going on inside him. So I took some details from the landscape that struck me on the drive down to Yakima this morning and tried to do the same. It's rough, I know.

The View from the Mountain

From the crest of Manastash Ridge
I can see clouds and sun
dappling the rolling lowlands of Badger Pocket
with patches of light and dark
and from the mountain vantage of time
I can see the light and dark in life's valley
in a pattern of meaning and growth.

On the other side of the ridge
the Umptanum mountains swell with something
alive, sinuous, sleeping just below the surface
of the brown-green brush blanketing their shoulders
and below the surface of my brown-green days
each one so like the last
there is something sleeping
I want to wake.

How high is too high for my mountain?
How deep is too deep down to go
for sleeping and waking and being
and knowing what I want to know?

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