Winter 1990 • Vol. XII No. 1 PoetryJanuary 1, 1990 |

We Are the Dream of Jefferson

To be rocked to sleep by mountains equals the rest of heroes. The great Welshman where he lies in his blue ridge dreams our continuing. Underneath his granite column on the slope he creates through the text of his thought these conflicts, the multiple and possible. Buried high and deep, attired in silk and brocade and powdered hair, he rests on his cold slab and sees through closed eyes the scope of contrary landscapes proceeding to the end of the continent. From his hidden horizon he not so much orders as observes and follows out each unfolding of the fabric, each minute twist of fiber, warp, and return, while the pasture hills roll on to highway and crowded mall, city and refinery, slum and harbor, to the Rockies, to space. His narrative curiosity enjoys the process day by day, his thought a voice that declares and echoes through mountains, beyond rivers, as the expeditions touch alien airs, stranger shores, in the telling out of the present through all its painful dissonance.

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