Where a south-flowing river
Leaves mountain rapids
And issues into spreading valleys
Of grains and grapevines, row by row,
Field by field, waving, curling,
What if one gray-green morning
With side-long sunlight coursing down from canyons,
The towns awoke to something strange?
What if the restless first man up
Looked out and saw on street corners
A plethora of servers,
Cassocked and chanting,
Lovers of us all,
Lifting up fresh baked loaves
And deep red juice,
And what if people shuffled out surprised,
Rubbing their eyes,
Wearing jeans or nightshirts
And listened as to street guitarists.
And some would reach and take the offered boon
While others take it in with eyes
Wide yet unalarmed?
And what if the cassocked ones
Would sing in tones that flowed
From each one’s deep well spring
And their colors and voices were myriad,
Hair long and short, black, yellow, gray or ringleted,
Bodies male or female, plump or bony,
Hands with rings or unadorned,
Their vestments floral, embroidered, checkered, or yellow polka-dotted?
And what if in this whole earth valley
The roadsides were filled with honeysuckle
And wild lupines seeding down from the hills
As waters flow to the sea?
And what if the stones had no need To cry out,
For in all the land
No one forbade any chanters to chant
And lift up their bounty aloft.