Sunday, February 17, 2013

William Bronk

Aspects of the World Like Coral Reefs

In the spring woods, how good it is to see
again the trees, old company,
how they have withstood the winter, their girth.

By gradual actions, how the gross earth
gathers around us and grows real, is there,
as though it were really there, and is good.

Certain stars, of stupendous size, are said
to be such and such distances away,--
oh, farther than our eyes along would ever see.

Thus magnified, the whole evidence
of our senses is belied. For it is not
possible for miles to add miles to miles

forever, not even if expressed as the speed of light.
The fault lies partly in the idea of miles.
It is absurd to describe the world in sensible terms.

How good that even so, aspects of the world
that are real, or seem to be real, should rise like reefs
whose rough agglomerate smashes the sea.

fr. Origin VI, Summer 1952

in The Gist of Origin ed. Cid Corman
[New York: Grossman Publishers, 1975]

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