A Moment’s Interlude
One night I wandered alone from my comrades’ huts;
The grasshoppers chirped softly
In the warm misty evening;
Bracken fronds beckoned from the darkness
With exquisite frail green fingers;
The tree gods muttered affectionately about me,
And from the distance came the grumble of a kindly train.
I was so happy to be alone,
So full of love for the great speechless earth,
That I could have laid my cheek in the wet grasses
And caressed with my lips the hard sinewy body
Of Earth, the cherishing mistress of bitter lovers.
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Notes on the prompt
We’ve all heard, talked, and read a lot about isolation in recent months on social media and in mainstream circles; about disconnection; about how much we miss the bustle of society and constant contact. The flip side of this, which only gets mentioned occasionally and with a strong sense of guilt, is that we’ve all experienced solitude in the positive sense far more frequently also: the vibrant hush of a moment in the natural world, the moment of nesting into self that can’t fully happen during an hourlong commute. This somewhat sentimental poem seemed to be about one such secret revel in solitude, a moment in which we “bitter lovers” of the world can let down our guard.