vast expanse of primal wilderness…
viewed from my rocky perch atop the Crown
eyes close as I breath the past to life
see secrets these sentinel mountains guard:
rangers roaming the roaring river valley
riding from beyond the grave their horses hooves
paw at the smoky air full of fire
aware of a new age coming
replacing all but faint signs of their passage
with instant fleeting momentary messages
hurled through once empty space
filled with houses, highways and speeding steel
then for a moment I feel a shudder like thunder
from deep underfoot Earth shakes me awake
to this haunted future.
Bill Kight, Carbondale, Colorado, February 27, 2011
(for my Nuche friends Clifford Duncan and Kenny Frost)
the fan rose and fell in
one slow smooth steady motion
back and forth eyes closed
empty hands turned over
extended out and up toward heaven
eagle wing of sacred purpose
trapped by earth and air
kept with caged rainbow intent
incense rises like a feathered serpent
sage and sweet grass smoke
become one with his sing-song prayer
(it was the medicine mans day off)
heartfelt desire to walk the red road
breath upon breath as if
they were my last
i pass the test where magic
bends to common purpose
“we should live this way every day,”
he says smiling.
Bill is White River National Forest Public Affairs Officer at US Forest Service, Grand Junction, Colorado Area. His work has earned his agency several awards including the Stephen H. Hart Award and an award from Colorado Preservation Inc. shared with the Aspen Historical Society.
Back in June 2011 when I invited him to one of our poetry events here in Placitas I heard something of his work as a public servant for our common good when he replied, "Thanks for the news. Wish I could come. Instead I am on 2 fires near Trinidad. Total acreage is 10,610. Burning in both New Mex. and Colo. I am Public Info. Officer (PIO) on the Rocky Mtn. Incident Mgt. Team A. 449 people on fires. 13 crews. 3 helicopters assigned as of tomorrow. About 19 engines and some 6 or 7 dozers. I lost count. Anyway, we are not able to be on [a website] yet but I am tweeting regular updates. . . Take care. Bill "
Recently he wrote, "I do continue to write both poetry and a column called Common Ground in the local paper the Sopris Sun. We also have the Karen Chamberlain Poetry Festival in March here in Carbondale, Colorado. We also have a poetry group . . . called the Roaring Fork Poetry Cooperative." Note: I met Bill when he was living in Placitas many years ago.
Feel free to tell others about this Sunday Poem. And check out the poem in the New Mexico Mercury. Submissions for the Sunday Poem are welcome. Send to firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com Larry Goodell