A curiosity of being


A curiosity of being

And the sun dropped like a flame
   to an empty sky,
exploring the endless darkness
with the pale light of dawn.
In that shining stillness,
giant mountains still new from creation
rose from the planet surface.
In the slowness of time,
the dimness of wakening,
they sensed the ambient brightness,
   their granite hands
holding the blueness of the sky
in cupped astonishment.

From this curiosity of being,
this vague encounter between density
   and airiness,
the first thought, insubstantial, floated to earth.
Where it touched the soil
wild grasses sprang up,
meadows filled with flowers, faces,
   fields of nations,
pale birches, dark ferns and races,
staring up at the spreading light,
gazing in awe at the mountain height
   far above.

From this curiosity of being,
this vague encounter between mind
   and mystery,
the first prayer rose to the sky
   circling like a bird.
In the slowness of time,
more came, then endless waves –
great formations, migrations,
vast flights of understanding,
spiraling eddies of light
   vanishing into stars
that lit the mind of night.
And God, in His curiosity of being,
   looked down,
touching the earth with astonished hands.

originally published in Panorama April 2001, slightly revised 2005