The Little Review (littlereview) wrote,
The Little Review
littlereview

Poem for Wednesday and Potomac Overlook Nature Center


Human Habitat
By Alison Hawthorne Deming

Some did not want to alter the design
when the failure message
said massive problem with oxygen.
Some wanted to live full tilt with risk.

By then we were too weak for daily chores:
feeding chickens, hoeing yams,
calibrating pH this and N2 that . . .
felt like halfway summiting Everest.

We didn’t expect the honeybees
to die. Glass blocked the long-wave
light that guides them.
Farm soil too rich in microbes

concrete too fresh ate the oxygen.
We had pressure problems,
recalibrating the sniffer. Bone tired
I reread Aristotle by waning light.

Being is either actual or potential.
The actual is prior to substance.
Man prior to boy, human prior to seed,
Hermes prior to chisel hitting wood.

I leafed through Turner’s England,
left the book open at Stonehenge.
A shepherd struck by lightning lies dead,
dog howling, several sheep down too.

The painter gave gigantic proportion
to sulphurous god rimmed clouds
lightning slashing indigo sky
while close at hand lie fallen stones

dead religion, pages dusty
brown leaf shards gathering
in the gutter yet I cannot turn the page
wondering what I am and when

in the story of life my life is taking place.
Now what. No shepherd. No cathedral.
How is it then that I read love
in pages that lie open before me?

--------

My Tuesday was so hectic that I don't even have time to write about it properly. I had a boatload of work to get done, I had laundry, I had a whole bunch of photos to upload, and in the afternoon we found out that Adam's bike had been successfully tuned up so we needed to pick it up and deliver it to him in College Park.

I am not only behind on the latest explanations for the Brangelina split and Skittles jokes but I only half-paid attention to the season premiere of Agents of SHIELD and I'm not sure whether that's because of my distraction or if it was kind of meh. Here are some animals we saw at Potomac Overlook Park not long ago:















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