Wednesday, February 25, 2015
Loren Eiseley: Coyote Country
If you should go, soft-footed and alert,
Down the long slope of shale
Into a tumbled land of scarp and butte
Beyond the pale
Of the herding men, where water is under stone,
You would be in coyote country. It is the place
Where tumbleweed is blown
Four ways at once, and your neighbors are not seen
Except as loping shapes
Or tangible dust.
Once, if you're lucky, something may pause and lift
One paw and two grey ears
In a moment's trust
That is gone like wind.
This is the road. Go down
Over the harsh way. If you dare, go down
Into the waste, where lonely and apart
The road runs north. Somewhere here is my heart,
If anywhere, I spy
Nothing at all--and you in turn may try
The thistle and subtle stones,
Or you may go
Southward tonight--be certain you will not know
More of me than is found
In two poised ears
Or feet gone without sound.
-- Loren Eiseley --
All the Night Wings
I don't know where Loren Eiseley spent most of his time--out in the field or behind a desk or in a classroom--but I think I know where his heart was.