End and Beginning

At start of spring I open a trench

In the ground. I put into it

The winter’s accumulation of paper,

Pages I do not want to read

Again, useless words, fragments,

errors. And I put into it

the contents of the outhouse:

light of the suns, growth of the ground,

Finished with one of their journeys.

To the sky, to the wind, then,

and to the faithful trees, I confess

my sins: that I have not been happy

enough, considering my good luck;

have listened to too much noise,

have been inattentive to wonders,

have lusted after praise.

And then upon the gathered refuse,

of mind and body, I close the trench

folding shut again the dark,

the deathless earth. Beneath that seal

the old escapes into the new.”

― Wendell Berry, New Collected Poems

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