There is a paradise place where the grass is lush and soft; the dew sparkles; the trees whisper in the wind.  There is a farm there.  The farmer and his family have a routine.  Every morning, for example, he or one of his children go to see the ducks to make sure the fencing for their run is still well, to check for predators, and to collect eggs.  The land is beautiful and so is the routine.  But to make sure they avoid stagnation of the mind, each time they go to the ducks they recite a poem or a passage.  They do this for all their many ordered activities.

It is not necessarily a poem about the activity.  It is often just a poem they like.  But it is the same one for each activity.  They find it more beautiful that way.  At the ducks, Dover Beach.  Cutting cabbage for sauerkraut, Out Out Brief Candle.  There are a thousand or more that they recite.

At nights, they play together doing geometry proofs.

If you go past the influence of the farm and its people, past the woods they log, past the hills where they pursue game, past the event horizon of their lives, you find a wasteland.  It is dark and roiling with chaotic forces, with an anarchy of brutal energies.

The farm family doesn’t know it, but that roiling darkness is what underlies their farm also.  Only it is guided and tamed and brought into order by their poetry and their passages and the harmony of their lives.  It is what makes everything so lush and green.  The lush farm is the natural end those forces were meant for.

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