Saturday, November 27, 2021

 Movable Mountain

Descending into

     the Bighorn

          Basin on 296

Slowed to fifty

     stopped by the

          sight of the mountain

Breathe hear feel the

     silent exploding

          reverential beauty

Fifty million years

     ago it was a 500 square

          mile breakaway

Rock that left the plateau

     slid sixty two miles

          in thirty minutes

The hardened larva gave us today's

     8'000 foot mountain with

          the old rock on top of new

The Kiowas called this upside

     gift Heart Mountain its western

          view an expansive beauty

Beauty had a bitter twist

     for 14,025 Japanese

          Americans in '42

Forced from their West Coast homes

     by jingoistic paranoia left

          rootless in Wyoming

Looked at the mountain daily

     from behind barbed

          wire and tar paper barracks

One's view of the mountain's beauty

      depended on which

          side one lived on

Barbed wire rolled up in 1945

     leaving one shack

          damage done

Freed from the camp lesson

     learned internees left

          Wyoming's loss


Today I live where

     mountains don't

          grow or slide

But where faster than a

     speeding bullet Covid

          rams returns rams

With an impact that

     distorts truth and

          threatens hope

While we watch

     mindlessly mired

          in denial

Past memories and future

     dreams turned

          upside down

And we are left to sort through

     the rubble decide what to

          cherish for rebuilding

Must we blend the past

     and knead the future to

         fashion a livable now

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