in memoriam: Fr. Daniel Berrigan S.J.

 

America is Hard to Find

 

Hard to find;

wild strawberries swans heron deer

those things we long to be

metamorphosed in and out of our sweet sour skins—

good news housing Herefords holiness

wholeness

Hard to find; free form men and women

harps hope food mandalas meditation

Hard to find; lost not found rare as radium rent free

uncontrollable uncanny a chorus

Jesus Buddha Moses founding fathers horizons

hope (in hiding)

Hard to find; America

now if America is doing well you may expect Vietnamese to

do well if power is virtuous the powerless will not be marked

for death if the heart of man is flourishing so will plants and

wild animals (But alas alas so also vice versa)

Hard to find. Good bread is hard to find. Of course. The hands

are wielding swords The wild animals fade out like Alice’s cat’s

smile Americans are hard to find the defenseless fade away like

Hundred year pensioners The sour faced gorgons remain…

But listen brothers and sisters this disk floats downward a flying saucer

in the macadam back yard where one paradise tree a hardy weed sends

up its signal flare (spring!)

fly it! turn it on! become

hard to find become be born

out of the sea Atlantis out in the wilds America

This disk like manna miraculous loaves and fishes

exists to be multiplied savored shared

play it! learn it! have it by heart!

Hard to find! where the frogs boom boom in the spring twilight

search for the odor of good bread follow it

man man is near (though hard to find)

a rib cage growing red wild as strawberries a heart!

imagine intelligence imagine peaceable caressing food planting music

making

hands                    Imagine                                Come in!

P.S.      Dear friends       I choose to be a jail bird (one species is

flourishing) in a kingdom of fowlers

Like strawberries             good

bread

swans herons Great Lakes I shall shortly be

hard to find

an exotic uneasy inmate of the NATIONALLY ENDOWED ELECTRONICALLY

INESCAPABLE ZOO

remember me I am

free at large untamable not nearly

as hard to find as America

 

 

-Fr. Daniel Berrigan S.J. (May 9, 1921-April 30, 2016)

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