Agrarian Age

In Spring we speak of seeds.
Bundled possibilities
foresee market days hale and fair.
Succulent fruit, trilling herbs,
vitalizing veggies
and all the spicy chatter of conviviality.

First there was the seed
plowed under to taste Earth,
swell with water,
burst into fecund brew designing
cells of chlorophyll to catch the fire,
symbiotically breathe, exchange,
enrich atmosphere, feed broader life.

Sacred seed
honored in mystic ceremonies,
deeply deified in chthonic memory.
We carry the seed of our fathers,
the toil of our mothers,
the hopes and fears of our teachers and tribe,
over rocky terrain, in hidden caves through
ice and flood and slavering predation,
never doubting nobility of destiny.
On appointed days, carefully watching solar/lunar
our assigned labor commences. Busy as any
bird or bee, we commit seed to chosen ground
with all the magic we can command.
Then, off to bacchanalia, reveling in a grand scheme
promising sustenance, renewed strength, ebullient plans,
romances, unnumbered chances for pride
and glory.

Thus goes the story we retell in lullaby,
in schoolyard intimacies and scholarly lies,
puffing up our little share of knowledge as armor,
protection from overwhelming vastness
of mystery, shades of colors without name.

Unclear on the protocol of shame, unwilling to admit
to ignorance that might unsettle carefully laid
hierarchies, unloose gates inviting chaos or worse,
we designate fruit for sacrifice to gods of greed and vice,
gleefully watch the rending of they who are not me.

“I, too wise for such ill use, repeatedly proven
by my abuse of these unworthy foes I refuse to admit
as kin — sinners, Lord. Surely I’ll not be taken in,
not take them in. Not share the bounty of your seed,
gifted to the chosen.”

Even in these days of polluted dirt, of work
demoted to laughable commodity,
idly watching waste stream into muddy rivers,
we can feel bolstered by occasional feasts
of vicarious blood, throwing hostile unsanctified
into the raging flood,
desperate attempt to stem an unquenchable tide,
while hiding any glimpse of doubt lest shadow
presage disaster.
Devolving, devouring both fruit and seed,
rather than part with
convenience of familiar fantasy?.

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