Morning Song

Ah, ’tis an eary mornin’,
nae eerie, nae early,
I mean what I say.
’Tis eary, for all the things
that are o’ the mornin’,
the dark, broodin’ firs,
the chimneys n’pines,
the yearnin’ branches
o’ the maple n’birch,
all o’ them, all o’ them,
are listenin’ to the dawn,
to the frosted shingles,
and the day’s very wakin’.

I have always been an early riser. I love the vast night, and the secrets it holds, but when Nature first whispered Awake! in my ear, I must have opened my eyes and seen her blushing in the eastern sky. I have looked to the dawn for sustenance ever since, have watched the sun rise countless times, have been out in field and furrow and inhaled the scent of awakening foliage, have seen rabbits peaking from their burrows and stray dogs wag and stretch, have watched steam rise from the tops of grape stakes all in a row, have followed bird tracks kissed by dew, have heard the soft warm hum of the nearby awakening town, have stood upon silent country roads that run to the end of the earth and bury themselves in the hills.

I met my father there, in the early morning. I saw him walking with a shovel over his shoulder, and he said, I give all of this to you. And then I met his father there, and I saw him walking with a great and sorrowful burden that bowed him not, and he, too, said, I give all of this to you.

’Tis a continent o’ bones
we’re walkin’ on, m’lad,
be wary, be wary.
If ye’d not sink
below the ground,
ye must be up early.

April 4, 2006

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