"...it is not too soon to provide by every
possible means that as few as possible shall
be without a little portion of land. The small
landholders are the most precious part of a state."
-Thomas Jefferson, to Reverend James Madison,
October 28, 1785
That is the glimmering vein
of our sanity, dividing from us
from the start: land under us
to steady us when we stood,
free men in the great communion
of the free. The vision keeps
lighting in my mind, a window
on the horizon in the dark.
To be sane in a mad time
is bad for the brain, worse
for the heart. The world
is a holy vision, had we clarity
to see it--clarity that men
depend on men to make.
It is ignorant money I declare
myself free from, money fat
and dreaming in its sums, driving
us into the streets of absence,
stranding the pasture trees
in the deserted language of banks.
And I declare myself free
from ignorant love. You easy lovers
and forgivers of mankind, stand back!
I will love you at a distance,
and not because you deserve it.
My love must be discriminate
or fail to bear its weight
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