Friday, February 5, 2010

This Is What I Love


This is what my spirit loves the most, these ancient hills - the sumptuous green abundance.

This is the earth's immense dreaming - handsome shapes left by dying Permian seas. In the early greening of spring, at a certain light, visible gradients, regular and level across the valleys, are visible high water marks - a subsidence spanning incomprehensible time.

No such thing as human eyes to witness the emergence of these hilltops, yet our blood matches the seawater.

Once, in this very spot, the slow roll of waves sculpted slopes now green and gold. The ebb and flow of winds high up in the atmosphere recall those tides and that mighty, long slumbering before ever a human being walked here.

I was here, again and again and again I was here. The old sea recalled in the salt of my blood, limestone molecules in my bones, breathing air molecules escaped the vanishing sea.

What are human beings but the very earth herself forming up, rising up from dirt and sea and stardust to see and hear and love the dreaming made real. Again and again and again I will be here.


Tiny Permian Sea fossils found in Spirit Creek.

Another fossil reference:

5 comments:

Li'l Ned said...

Wow. I knew as soon as I first 'met' you that you were a writer. As I've read your blog, I've learned the deeper and deeper truth of that. Today I want to shout that you are a poet of the earth as well as a singer of the spirit.

I'll be waiting for your first book to come out. I wish the world would read your blog, dear Jackie.

Your fan forever, Kathy

Li'l Ned said...

On another subject entirely, I was quite fascinated by your descriptions of the ancient sea terraces. I am quite used to seeing them around here, where most of Oregon east of the Cascades was covered by inland seas, most notably during the end of the Pleistocene, as the meltwater from the vast glacial sheets pooled and released behind ice dams.

I was deeply moved by your words describing all this. I have been fascinated by geology and earth history since I was a child, and have read a lot of quite well-written and interesting books on the subject. None of them have even come close to evoking these pictures as you have.

I was especially interested to see your photos of Permian fossils. I have just read a couple of books on what is now known to be the greatest mass extinction of all time -- the end of the Permian era. I can tell you that those little guys perished in the company of 96% of marine species. Even the usually-reserved scientists have dramatic names for this event: 'the mother of all mass extinctions' 'the great dying'.

How amazing that 'you' are back at Spirit Creek, to dig and hold those tiny vestiges of your former self. We are all bone of rock, blood of salt water, flesh of earth..........

Jackie said...

Thanks Kathy for the compliment. Coming from a writer like you, that is really something.

When I first moved here and found the fossils, I began researching. How old were they? What were they? Etc. That was when I learned they came from one of the largest extinctions on the planet, and that it happened long before dinosaurs... Mindboggling. The Permian period was between 299 million and 248 million years ago. I can not even imagine time in a such a span.
I think it is amazing that we can still see the ancient terraces - and that both of us have pondered them. I always wonder how many millons of years was needed to create one six foot terrace? Time almost beyond measure. The entire history is in the "flesh" of the earth.

Here is something you will love: When the glaciers melted back from this area of Kansas, they dropped tons and tons of red granite boulders of all sizes - some are huge. They can go into the sacred fire for sweat lodges. Think of their journey - the distance and the time - in order to go into Lodge with us to pray!!!

Jackie said...

If you open this to full size, a few of the terraces are visible in this photo. I never have my camera with me when the light is just right, when they are visible in the distance, distinct and unmistakable.

cyberkit said...

Do we cuddle now? I'm not sure anyone's ever made love to my spirit quite like that before.