California Saga (On My Way To Sunny Californ-I-a)
An eagle's nest on the head of an old redwood on one of the
Above Ventana Creek, that jagged country which nothing but a fallen
meteor will ever plow: no horseman
Will ever ride there, no hunter cross this ridge but the winged ones, no
one will steal the eggs from this fortress.
The she-eagle is old, her mate was shot long ago, she is now mated
With a son of hers.
When lightning blasted her nest she built it again on the same tree, in
the splinters of the thunder bolt.
In a broken shack an old man takes his time about dyin'
And just at the back a wild flowerbed that he'll lie in
In dawn's new light a man might venture
A horse drawn stage from Monterey.
The she-eagle is older than I: she was here when the fires of eighty-five
raged on these ridges,
She was lately fledged and dared not hunt ahead of them, but ate scorched
The world has changed in her time; humanity has multiplied,
But not here; men's hopes and thoughts and customs have changed, their
powers are enlarged, their powers and their follies have become fantastic.
Spilled down the hill a wagon load of bodies lay scattered, shipwrecked
Limestone ore is all that mattered.
They took it from the hills right through the cargo doors
How many ships have come and gone at Thurso's landing shore?
The unstable animal never has been changed so rapidly.
The motor and the plane and the great war have gone over him,
And Lenin has lived and Jehovah died: while the mother-eagle
Hunts her same hills, crying the same beautiful and lonely cry
And is never tired: dreams the same dreams,
And hears at night the rock-slides rattle and thunder in the
Throats of these living mountains.
It is good for man
To try all changes, progress and corruption, powers, peace and anguish,
not to go down the dinosaur's way
Until all his capacities have been explored: and it is good for him
To know that his needs and nature are no more changed, in fact, in ten
thousand years than the beaks of eagles.
Of the eagle's plight, we know that nature's balance is undone.
And it's the birthright of man to unify and live his life as one.
A whisper of the word will let you soar with your soul.