Ancient Cord

by Ethel Mortenson Davis

The ancient peoples
yoked themselves
to the night sky,
studied the moon’s cycles,
the planets,
and solar eclipses.

We, however, at night,
tie ourselves
to the television, computer,
and cell phone,
barely noticing
the daily changes
in temperature,
or lunar phases.

We have cut the cord,
lost our beginnings
and futures—

the time of when to start
spring planting,

the time of the salmon run
up the river,

and the time of calving
of elk and deer.


Filed under Ethel Mortenson Davis, Poetry

18 responses to “Ancient Cord

  1. The pale green glow of electronic “on” lights disrupts our circadian rhythms as well. Sad, isn’t it?

  2. That’s very satisfying, Ethel. There’s a lovely mellow, melancholy, feel and sound to these lines.

  3. kenneturner

    They are parallel universes — some of us have learned to bend the lines, which can be very spiritual.

  4. Can it be possible to have a bit of both I wonder ??
    Hmmm, have to think on that one.

  5. Once the cord is cut, can’t sew it back; painful to watch…

  6. Anna Mark

    This is so true. I’d love to be more in tune with the sky, the land, the water, the air. It is a longing that I often have. This poem is quite stirring.

  7. A weight of loss and yearning …

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