missedstations

missedstations:

Dear Charles: And so we meet once in San Francisco and I learn
I bombed you long ago in Belgrade when you were five.
I remember. We were after a bridge on the Danube
hoping to cut the German armies off as they fled north
from Greece. We missed. Not unusual, considering I
was one of the bombardiers. I couldn’t hit my ass if
I sat on the Norden or rode a bomb down singing
The Star Spangled Banner. I remember Belgrade opened
like a rose when we came in. Not much flak. I didn’t know
about the daily hangings, the 80,000 Slavs who dangled
from German ropes in the city, lessons to the rest.
I was interested mainly in staying alive, that moment
the plane jumped free from the weight of bombs and we went home.
What did you speak then? Serb, I suppose. And what did your mind
do with the terrible howl of bombs? What is Serb for “fear”?
It must be the same as in English, one long primitive wail
of dying children, one child fixed forever in dead stare.
I don’t apologize for the war, or what I was. I was
willingly confused by the times. I think I even believed
in heroics (for others, not for me). I believed the necessity
of that suffering world, hoping it would learn not to do
it again. But I was young. The world never learns. History
has a way of making the past palatable, the dead
a dream. Dear Charles, I’m glad you avoided the bombs, that you
live with us now and write poems. I must tell you though,
I felt funny that day in San Francisco. I kept saying
to myself, he was on the ground that day, the sky
eerie mustard and our engines roaring everything
out of the way. And the world comes clean in moments
like that for survivors. The world comes clean as clouds
in summer, the pure puffed white, soft birds careening
in and out, our lives with a chance to drift on slow
over the world, our bomb bays empty, the target forgotten,
the enemy ignored. Nice to meet you finally after
all the mindless hate. Next time, if you want to be sure
you survive, sit on the bridge I’m trying to hit and wave.
I’m coming in on course but nervous and my cross hairs flutter.
Wherever you are on earth, you are safe. I’m aiming but
my bombs are candy and I’ve lost the lead plane. Your friend, Dick

robcam-wfu
The church in the forest
was built of wood

the faithful carved their names by the doors
same names as ours

soldiers burned it down

the next church where the first had stood
was built of wood

with charcoal floors
names were written in black by the doors
same names as ours

soldiers burned it down

we have a church where the others stood
it’s made of ash
no roof no doors

nothing on earth
says it’s ours
W.S. Merwin, “Ash” (via robcam-wfu)
daremightily
daremightily:

Theodore Roosevelt & John Muir on horseback in Yosemite, CA, 1903
After spending three nights camping alone with John Muir, President Roosevelt helped push for including the Yosemite Valley and Mariposa Grove of giant sequoias as part of Yosemite National Park. Previously, it had been under the care of the state of California.

daremightily:

Theodore Roosevelt & John Muir on horseback in Yosemite, CA, 1903

After spending three nights camping alone with John Muir, President Roosevelt helped push for including the Yosemite Valley and Mariposa Grove of giant sequoias as part of Yosemite National Park. Previously, it had been under the care of the state of California.

takemetomountains
takemetomountains:

In 1903, President Theodore Roosevelt accompanied Muir on a visit to Yosemite. Upon entering the park, Muir told the president about state mismanagement of the valley and rampant exploitation of the valley’s resources. Even before they entered the park, he was able to convince Roosevelt that the best way to protect the valley was through federal control and management.
Subsequent to witnessing the magnificent splendor of the valley, the president asked Muir to show him the deep and unseen parts of Yosemite. The parts that took work, effort, and time. Muir and Roosevelt set off largely and alone setting up camp in the back country. Under the stars the duo spoke about its wonders at Glacier Point waking to snow’s dusting. Roosevelt spoke how he would never forget that night. 
May we never too. 

takemetomountains:

In 1903, President Theodore Roosevelt accompanied Muir on a visit to Yosemite. Upon entering the park, Muir told the president about state mismanagement of the valley and rampant exploitation of the valley’s resources. Even before they entered the park, he was able to convince Roosevelt that the best way to protect the valley was through federal control and management.

Subsequent to witnessing the magnificent splendor of the valley, the president asked Muir to show him the deep and unseen parts of Yosemite. The parts that took work, effort, and time. Muir and Roosevelt set off largely and alone setting up camp in the back country. Under the stars the duo spoke about its wonders at Glacier Point waking to snow’s dusting. Roosevelt spoke how he would never forget that night. 

May we never too.