Poet’s Nook: Wendell Berry’s "No Going Back"

(a path)


No, no, there is no going back.
Less and less you are
that possibility you were.

More and more you have become
those lives and deaths
that have belonged to you.

You have become a sort of grave
containing much that was
and is no more in time, beloved
then, now, and always.

And so you have become a sort of tree
standing over a grave.

Now more than ever you can be
generous toward each day
that comes, young, to disappear
forever, and yet remain
unaging in the mind.

Every day you have less reason
not to give yourself away.

Wendell Berry’s writing reminds me of Walt Whitman’s in that it is Earth-bound, pragmatic & deeply (albeit implicitly) spiritual . I have only scratched the surface of this literary genius &  look forward to reading much more of his work. Please check out his thought-provoking essay, “Why I Am Not Going To Buy a Computer”. Equally as interesting as this essay is his response to the letters he received critiquing this piece–Great stuff!



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