Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Ed Abbey

Ray Zimmerman
(Previously published in the Earth First! Journal and Hellbender Press)

An old black vulture landed in a tree
overlooking Chickamauga Creek;
gave me a sidelong glance.

I thought of Edward Abbey,
critic of government agencies,
professor, and park ranger.

Abbey is buried in an illegal grave;
a cairn of stones to cover
his remains.

His friends saw to his request,
wrote on one stone,
“Edward Abbey, no comment.”

The nemesis of Glen Canyon Dam
didn’t want a memorial,
got one anyway.

He always said he’d come back
as a vulture next time,
just seemed fitting.

I looked up into the oak,
said “Hey there Ed,
looks like a good day for flying.”

Abbey didn’t say a word
just gave me that sidelong glance,
the old buzzard.