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Thursday 26 January 2012

a hub of resistance

The challenge from Jingle Poetry at The Gooseberry Garden was to write a poem on an article in The New York Times. I initially wrote this down as a found poem, but then made additions and changes, so it is no longer that.

In Muir Woods
deep in the redwood shade
stands Druid Heights
height and hub
a while ago
of a lost
counter culture
crumbling now
but imperceptibly
towards the forest floor.

Once a bright oasis
every concept
such as status
and its symbols
benefits and preferences,
unable now to handle
even to sigh at
the sheer arrogance
that leads a word to pin
on such a breast
the sign and symbol
of Historic Site,
a place that's "made it",
that will bring
the less-than-welcome world
knocking at its door.

They have gone now,
those who inhabited the house,
those who opposed
status and the status quos,
the poet and the Zen
the founder of
the Union of Prostitutes,
the inventor of
self-regulating hot tubs...
All dispersed
like blown leaves in a gale.


Ygraine said...

There is an overwhelming sense of impermanence here that evokes a strange sadness in me.
I suppose all great things are eventually reduced to mere memories by the passing of time, but sometimes I do so wish it didn't have to be that way!
A brilliant write, Dave :)

Cloudia said...

Deeply evocative. Produced a very salutary effect on my respiration and mood. Thank You Dave-

Warm Aloha from Waikiki
Comfort Spiral

> < } } ( ° >

Eileen T O'Neill ..... said...


You have captured perfectly with your words, the mood and social standing of those who were very much alive, with the desire to life forever....



Brian Miller said...

i feel a bit sad that such a place has gone by the way...to stand against the status'...ihope there are still those places...

Mary said...

I agree it is sad that the members of the counterculture are no longer there. They often had things to teach the rest of us.

Windsmoke. said...

Even the mightiest of empires in past history have crumbled and withered away like blown leaves in a gale :-).

Dave King said...

I do see what you mean and have to agree. The New York Times article did put a very different slant on the facts and had an altogether different feel, I think - largely by the use of gratuitous adjectives, phrases such as: lesbian poet (what was the significance of her being a lesbian?); ground-breaking Zen philosopher, etc. It made the former community sound a bit twee and a bit freaky - which it may have been, but it didn't seem the right tone to me.

Wow, well, thank YOU for saying!

Many thanks for this, it is deeply appreciated.

Yes, so do I. I think not as many as there once were. I seem to remember that in the 50s and60s they were really quite numerous.

Indeed. It is sad that they have declined to such an extent, but good to know there are still more folk around to appreciate them than might appear on the surface.

This is very true, though maybe not a great consolation. Indeed, nothing lasts for ever.

Maxwell Mead Williams Robinson Barry said...

a sad story, well done,

very thrilled to see you share.


Dave King said...

A warm welcome to you. Thanks for your thoughts.