Tag: time

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Falling Away to Depth, Valley of the Gods, Cedar Mesa, Moki Dugway, State Road 21, Utah, United States of America

Falling Away to Depth

The mesa falls away
Into the depths of early evening
Low sun illuminates
Undulating canyons and buttes

Sedimented sandstone
Layers indicating a scale
Powerfully daunting
And exquisite

And I
Stopped halfway between
Floor and ceiling
Sense myself in the centre of aeons

Epochs pass
Every hundred steps or so
Up the trail

A hundred years
A thousand
A hundred thousand
A million

Unwinding time
As species come
And species go

Great, fearsome lizards
Ruled the known universe
For 165 million years

But only in the last tens of steps
Before the top
Do I walk in the footsteps
Of my most ancient ancestors
A paltry 6 or so million years ago

I am reminded
For all our accomplishments and cleverness
We are but toddlers on this Earth
Itself nothing more
Than a pale blue dot
Circling a minor star
Spiraling in an outer arm
Of one galaxy
In a universe dotted
With hundreds of billions

Layer upon layer
Of time and space
Stretch out to scales
Unimaginable

A few steps more
I stand atop the mesa
Returned to the time and place
That belongs to me now

Deep, heavy breaths
To gain my equilibrium
While scanning across the vista
Tallying a few hundred million years of strata

A snippet
In an existence billions of years in the making
Layer upon layer of time and space
To make this collection of sediments
Which seems so very vast and ancient
But is no more than a cosmic blip
In all that was
All that is
And all that will be

I feel small
Fleeting
Insignificant

Yet

Somehow

And nonetheless

Stupendously magnificent

Because in all this immensity
Stands me
A self-aware collection of molecules
Contemplating the inconceivable miracle
That is my own consciousness
Tucked away in some small backwater
Of eternal infinity

Just how fucking exquisite is that?

And the view up here is awesome.

The sun sets
Light falls away to darkness
But for the little beacon of light
That is me

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Late Afternoon Reds and Blues, Moki Dugway, Utah State Highway 261, United States of America

The Changing Sky

From a high vantage
Late in the afternoon
Or is this early evening?
An in-between of light and tone
Like my mood

I scan the roads
Which took me here
Now and in the past
And again perhaps
In some near or distant future

Far below
Moving slowly
Or so it seems
Scale and time
Diminished by the distance
Carloads of people
And luggage
Expectations
And dreams to be
Fulfilled or dashed

Some approach
Some recede
All have, or will
Round the curve below
Before, or after
Passing behind me
On the switchback’s final curve

Some stop
Unload their occupants
Who join me and the gentle breeze
On Cedar Mesa’s rim
To bask in changing sky
With quiet wonder

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Deep Valley, Navajo Point, Grand Canyon National Park, Utah, United States of America

Grand ~ Pic and a Word Challenge #323

I stand upon this grandest rim
Try to imagine unthinkable time
Relent before too long such fruitless task
Instead I’ll contemplate this lazy little rhyme

Through the plateau
The Colorado pickaxe falls
Reveals sedimental sandstone rings
The eons marked on canyon walls

Rock bottom finds the hardest rock
Twelve hundred meters down below
There an ancient granite shield
No deeper can the river go

But wider still
The river’s reach
A force of will
The cliffs be breached

Upstream the river
Has not yet found
The basement rock
So burrows still into the ground

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Wispy Skies, Zion National Park, Utah, United States of America

Will of the Wisp

My presence in this moment
Is but a wisp of a cloud
In a windswept sky
A drop of rain
In the eons of torrents
Which gouge a canyon
From a plateau of stone

Try as I might
I cannot grasp
The monumental meaningless
Of my own existence
Leaving me to acknowledge
The incalculable significance
Of drawing a single breath

Here am I
An infinitesimal ephemeral wisp
In the cloud-strewn sky
Of existence
Claiming my glorious place
In the magnificence
As if a passing moment in eternity
Were eternity itself