I wandered through a land of silent hills.
(The land is lost—nor where, nor name, nor why)
A grass-blown emptiness of wind-soft silences—
An endless prairie swept into an endless sky.
The rounding summits flowed into the falling sun,
And slopes leaned long into the dying light.
The sky was lifting, falling out into the sky,
The darkness opened in upon the night.
There was, alone upon a hill, a tree—
Stark standing in that sweeping, empty land.
Into the dark his cragging branches rose—
Into the far—an empty, reaching hand.
The land is lost—I cannot tell you more—
And yet I beg you, show me what it meant;
That upward, outward reach— what was that tree?
That worshipping—that ceaseless discontent?
All night the stars flowed through those fingertips.
All night, a shimmering ecstasy of pain
Burned cold upon the reverent edge of impudence
Along those branches, spreadingly insane.
Struck deep into the black of stars clawed forth
A blacker silhouette of empty space.
Stretched forth a desperate, drawing grasp—
wild lines flung wildly into heaven’s face.
Bent down unbending heights and snapped
The lines of thought, hurled back the reach of sight
Furled through the night, toward the soul
rushed fury of an unapproaching light.
Release at dawn, by violence.
A wound—a limp—within the thought, a rent.
A blessing wrenched from peace—an aching joy.
The silence of a ceaseless discontent.
Mr. Martin loves words for their ability to create deeper awareness and experience of life through connection between minds and hearts.