scaffolding gray border - November 16, 2014s

author’s note:

Earth’s population, at present, is around 7.274 billion (and growing by the second).  For reasons of sound and rhythm, I rounded the number down to 7.


I want to see
all our secret priestesses
and priests.

in blue work clothes
they toil deep in the mines
they dig new wells—

they erect scaffolding and build
structures, both seen and unseen.

In the night as we slumber
their hearts swell and overflow
the river bank to soothe
the seven billion battlefields
of our human world.

All these birthing labors
eventually exhaust them—
ever so often, they must
drag themselves out
to the motherly forest:

to surrender themselves
to the fertile black earth—
to decay and resurrect
in three days or less

and maybe they hesitate
before returning

but they return, nonetheless

because as priests and priestesses
they understand nothing is lost:
they realize even when they lose
it’s just another step
in the ascent.

© 2014, Michael R. Patton
commong courage: the book