'Way back when, I posted the first two sections of a poem about a profound mountain-climbing experience I had. I've finally written the last two sections. Here's section one; here's section two; section three was posted yesterday. Now, finally, section four.
IV. Into the West
This touchable meat of me and the glorious intangibility
both suffered and endured: both ache as the summit nears,
and both will be stiff with victory tomorrow.
The mind fought panic, the body fought shakes;
the mind won over fear of heights, the body won
from fear of heights. I see no separation, no divide.
And then, the top!
Suddenly, not one bread-sized rock between my boots
and the rain-heavy sky. The mountain levels out
so the sphere of the world is spread around like a clock
and I the eye that points the seconds’ hands.
Strange how the eye cannot stay on distance, but strays
to nearer things: the rim of this island in air,
a plaque that proclaims redundant absolution,
the whitewashed wall of a chapel. Locked.
My sneakers clack on bland rocks,
but now the all-important feet are only a founding,
are no more than a base. I am tall, my arms outcrossed,
turning and turning the hands of the clock,
ribboning the rainbow, bringing the sun,
shouting a laughter of fabulous tears
into the endless. Ringing the joy.
And there was never more humility
in one exultant saint.
Whatever: this incarnate being, does.