Poetry Thursday: On looking out over the valley

succulents and bougainvillea and trees in the ojai valley

Have you seen the light
to the side of the house?
And have you seen
how it pulls each edge
of each leaf
of the agaves
into brilliant focus,
and casts shadows
in the folds of the
organ-pipe cactus
while it draws your eye
to the two shy flowers
blooming to one side?

And have you seen the light
on the bougainvillea
at the edge of the road
and on the lavender
to one side
and the soft, green sage
to the other
and on the million silvery spikes
of rosemary
just beyond?

Have you seen the light
on your hand
on your feet
on the gravel
on the asphalt
on the twisted wires
that seem to thread
from tree to tree
and through the haze,
on the softly sloping mountains
at the other edge
of the valley?

Yes, there are dishes
to be washed
and beds
to be made
and errands to be run
and to-do lists
to be done.
But they will be here
and this
will not.

Sit, if you can,
for a moment
and take in
what you can,
for now,
because you cannot
ever see enough of it
and because all of it
will change
in the blink of an eye.


  1. You are so wise. So many answers are wrapped up in this poem–to the questions inherent in the previous post. Is it the place that’s makes you happy, or the search for the place, or maybe even the “what do I do along the way?” Isn’t that a Buddhist thing?

    I love Poetry Thursday.

  2. Beautiful
    thank you.
    I had the same thoughts
    (but not with the words put together so well)
    As a walked along the in all the grays and blues at ocean beach (S.F.) yesterday

  3. oh…makes me want to take a long walk with you.

    Which, if you’re ever in the SF Bay Area, I can treat you to various nature walks of your choosing. I’m back in Marin for awhile…you have a standing invitation.

  4. Beautiful.
    I do have dishes to wash and floors to clean. I’ll play with the soap bubbles, watch the sun splash across the wood floor, and skip out to what is promising to be a gorgeous sunny day.
    Thank you.

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