On a recent trip to Alaska, we visited Whittier. Accessible by auto through a one-way tunnel also servicing the railroad, tourism and fishing call people to visit and enjoy the gateway to Prince William Sound. Of note is the Buckner Building, a remnant of WWII that is off-limits.
Across the salted plains
We watch the sun fall
The moon rise
The machines sleep.
In dreams spaced by 100 years
I see you on the highest peak
Of the homeland we once
I woke in the snow blanketed forest
Facing the morning sky.
Tenants of dreams fill each fiber and neuron,
I can only piece together that I was not made for this world.
I lost direction when the void
Overtook my body and my mind
Accelerating through space
Toward unexplored, unknown, and untouched worlds.
Where is our home now?
Above photo from: Nancy Chuang
Emerging from the forest
through the last barrier of this life,
beasts of the past intertwined with shadows
roam through the open field playing out their purpose.
Standing out of their way as
I am a visitor passing to the next life.
Crossing the field I am met
by concrete and metal machines.
Is this my next life
or only a preview of the coming revolution?
Smoke fills the darkened sky.
I forget where I am.
The field merges with the horizon.
Beasts disappear – were they even real?
Trees bend and in unison lift me from the field.
Passing through smoke filled dreams of the past or future
I emerge at the base of granite peaks.
I watch the sun rise from
distant cold moving water.
White-capped waves emerge from the horizon
and over time they will arrive at my feet
standing on the rock strewn shoreline
covered in clear ice.
I imagine staying here through the passing months
when the deep winter takes hold of this
land and my body becomes one with the
water and the earth and from this
connection I am transformed back to
my birth state when I emerged from the horizon.
There is something dramatic and something many times larger than us. What surrounds and embraces us with reluctance because we are there within its midst.
The thrill of venturing into unknown and undiscovered lands, into unnamed glaciers, lakes with undisturbed shorelines, trails and elevations unknown to maps, lives within us. I desire to truly experience wilderness, the way the scene unfolded before God’s eyes and the final touch of a masterpiece, with unfettered air breathed when emerging from primitive shelters, built by hand from what the land offered and gave to them. Where does this experience lie in our time? Is there some far away land, hidden under tussocks fed by glacial streams, within a mountain’s shadow? Who or what holds this experience secret, and pristine? Does it even exist anymore? It might remain an elusive chase and game, an experience we live and die by in our dreams, the end game we pour our heart and soul into.
Why do we chase that experience so close to our fingertips, yet the feeling, the tingle, so elusive? What is encoded into our bodies and our DNA?
What is the most pure, and at the same time, most simple experience we as humans, can learn from? It is time spent alone, with your hands as survival tools, sustenance found while roaming the free land, water down the hill at the creek, ripe berries dangling in the morning sun reflecting dew, fallen trees and dried bush to make the evening’s fire.
The cold water lifted from the high-tide runs through the clenched fist. The eastern wind passes through the outstretched arms and fingertips. The ancient trees reach for the sky with entrenched roots that have withstood time, storms, and worse, human intervention. What all of these elements have in common is their resilience and ability to thrive without humans, and the unfortunate consequence of dying at our hands.
Who is to adopt and change in this sometimes toxic relationship?
We create machines from the technology we discover
and in the pursuit of higher knowledge we imbue
our intellect, instincts, and capacity to explore
and wonder into these machines.
And we wonder what could go wrong.
In a dystopian future…
At what point does a thing pass over a human defined line
and become a sentient being?
When will the machines we create exceed our ability to control and as drastic measures,
stop their production?
When will these machines become self sufficient and with speed, accuracy, and efficiency
exceed our own capacity, and replicate themselves?
Falling into the future from the present
I sense time is changing, its motion
pushing me forward into moments
I may not be ready for.
While science states that time
does not change, how much do we
know of the physical universe
we infer and how much exists
beyond the borders and boundaries
we see and how do we know
how many universes exist out
there, wherever that is?
And if there are multiple universes,
what are the chances that we exist
in multiple dimensions and what really
is occurring is our other self pushing us forward?
Lake Superior fog
rolls north across
the open waters
and in another time
these were the first
settlers of the new land.