City lights, Country stars

This place is good for me just now this bright horizontal land although I won't pretend: I miss the cityscape deeply ache for her verticals of glass and steel and long to feel the energy of urban life surging through me electrically so that I shine with radiant colors am given wings and can soar jubilant with all the possibilities of things to be Because the city is so beautiful and deep I plunged with whole heart into her bookshops and galleries universities and universalities stirred by ardent voices Czech and Arab the passionate argument in the street the rendezvous at the cafe I sought cathedral and synagogue -- a rich ethnic mix -- ebony and ivory and all the close encounters trumpets of dawn racing the drums of night but found that cities have their side effects when embraced too innocently taken too fast Small town girl did you try to seize the lightning? did you ride the bucking horse? did you guess the shrieking subway train that gets you there in time can also pierce you to the core?

The streets go off in all directions: Which way? Who can say? the park's lush fens/forbidding paths that shout both Yes and No those Keep signs sprouting in the love grass the joyful fountains rimmed with broken glass and all those great skyscraping names that steal your sun as deftly as an crystal tower can will the shy vine strayed innocently into that proud sunflower patch ever emerge? ever learn the color of its flower?

If I surrendered crowds to gain these flocks of birds or traded urban dissonance for what a few nocturnal owls say or bartered

acres of asphalt for hectares of corn if for unrelenting neon I have chosen lilacs and the Milky Way yet I did not wholly say goodbye but au revoir left the house but couldn't really lock the door I cut the lights then left a lantern burning The city is so beautiful and deep everything it had it offered me all its riches and withheld nothing (I am grateful though I could not stay for the streets go off in all directions Which way? Which way?) and now the city must forgive this deset dweller stunned by total ocean Before a sea she needs a Pend Oreille a mountain brook and prairie streams a Congo a Mississippi and so beneath these modest bluffs the quiet river moves through this kind place Listen! A clean wind blows No clamor nothing to shout down my dreams instead a silence to be filled a space for my presence and my song Here I have sun enough to plant a forest to start orchards here I have stars and light and room Look! already my pear trees blossom! already my redbuds bloom!

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