Han Shan’s Baby Went to the Pyrenees to Study Ecology and to Eat Lamb

I want to know the names of all the trees!
How the friendly yellow flowers got here! 
Your name, teeny microorganism
in the dirt beneath these fingernails 
that sink into cool earth
riddled with Paleozoic secrets
diamonds, monsters, 
all sorts of sediment scrambled from a historically great fit of tectonic turbulence,
25 million years ago 
which birthed you, baby mountains, 
(continental Africa and Europe unite!)
with your copper-tinted waterfalls and maidenhair fern coves.

I see purple blossoms
and flirting in green grass there,
bodacious bovine; grey, silky cows.
Lo! here soars the griffin vulture…
and on his way back to a sandy land, the chilly Egyptian vulture!

I hadn’t the words to order in Catalan but still,
in the mountains the older women put some fat 
on my summer bones
feeding me jam made with berries shared with bears.

The fog up here did me well 
softening the edges of the stress I carried
from life in an angular city.

Telephone poles and wires 
swing silver and low 
above black pines
below the clouds. 
They carry no messages from me! No.
Today I speak with no one but the toothless man 
in the small bar on the hill
my ancestors 
and the small rock stuck in my shoe.

I haven’t found fossils yet 
but I will keep digging anyways.
The population here is growing old
and soon they’ll continue their work 
in new ways
caring for the continuity 
of this good earth.

Beautiful photographs by Andi Davila in Alinyà Mountain, Catalonia.

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