WE WHO WOULD LIVE THE TRUE LIFE OF NATURE
By Alice Loyd
I live wedged between the canyon walls of this culture.
Beyond them I sense—I swear I’ve seen—the green light
Of the world where I belong.
We who would live the true life of nature
Only view it now through the cracks
Scratched into hard walls by our own or earlier hands.
In order to become human, we must know trees.
We must grow up alongside foxes,
Run with quail, sleep on moss.
The ones who would have trained me—
The small red wolf, the buffalo, Bachman’s warbler—
They are all gone, though their light lasts.
It shines through concrete. I believe those rare rays
Lean toward me from the other side,
As if they know me.
That light must also be seeking us.
Nature, from beyond this culture’s barriers,
Must long for her lost children.
From two sides then life seeks life,
And though we can’t pass through industrial cliffs,
We know home by our longing.