Land Remains


It is still there, that tangled tannin creek,
coursing its lazy drift northward
through rushes of wind-whipped cattails
and pink flowered lily pads,
framed by tribes of cabbage palms
and ancient bald cypress trees,
whose rings are the mentor of time.
Golden pastures mute galloping hooves,
their rhythmic cadenced thudding
complementing manes that dare gravity.
I can hear a whip crack, its hollow-sharp
echoing subtly from bay-head to boyhood,
moving cattle in an age-old dance
across a dwindling landscape.
Clumps of dog fennel wind-wave about
and shimmering-feathered turkeys
forage for palmetto berries, unaware.
At the edge of a pine island
a buck peers out at me, attentive.
I am still there, somewhere, mind-folded.
The sun beading sweat and my lips tingling
from the sweet nectar of swollen oranges.

The land remains.  It always has.

It is the currency of eons gone by,
making ever so tedious changes,
they seem a sameness, but are not.
Land grows at the pace of permanence.
It is we who are temporary.
Yet we barter tender for timber
and rake the land into cities.

What is beneath is still the land,
but what was once is soon lost.


© Mark Andrew James Terry, 2015

Public Domain Photo