This poem was recently sent to us by one of our members. We like it a lot.
Our culture puts a strong emphasis on expanding your knowledge and vision and consciousness. I am all for a lot of those things a lot of the time.
But one should be careful not loose their intimate knowledge of particular things. To know so many things that you know nothing deeply is also a tragedy.
Like always with Wendel Berry, there is so much in this poem. Read it a few times....
By Wendel Berry
Because we have not made our lives to fit our places, the forests are ruined, the fields eroded, the streams polluted, the mountains overturned. Hope then to belong to your place by your own knowledge of what it is that no other place is, and by your caring for it as you care for no other place, this place that you belong to though it is not yours, for it was from the beginning and will be to the end. …
Speak to your fellow humans as your place has taught you to speak, as it has spoken to you. Speak its dialect as your old compatriots spoke it Before they had heard a radio. Speak Publicly what cannot be taught or learned in public.
Listen privately, silently to the voices that rise up From the pages of books and from your own heart. Be still and listen to the voices that belong To the streambanks and the trees and the open fields. There are songs and sayings that belong to this place, By which it speaks for itself and no other.
2007, Poem VI
Fun fact about this painting by Eric Sloan: It is hanging on the wall in Mr. Roger's home. There is another Eric Sloan painting hanging right beside Mr. Roger's front door which you can see while he does his intro and outro songs in every episode. That painting has snow in it so I decided not to put it in an August blog post. I have been a fan of Eric Sloan's art for many years now. It wasn't till I recently re-watched some Mr. Rogers with my daughters that I was able to suddenly identify the paintings in the background!
Sometimes I wonder how much my adult interests were influenced by sub-conscious childhood experiences....
If you read all the way to the end of these blog posts and you can tell me where THIS painting is in Mr. Roger's house I'll give you a free pound of ground beef at the drop site!