Beauty as well as Bread

Beauty as well as Bread
June 13, 2016 Author

From the Chair: Beauty as well as Bread

John Muir wrote that humanity “needs beauty as well as bread.”

Especially given the events of the recent past it is helpful to contemplate the beauty of the world. In that spirit I offer this wonderful poem by Joy Harjo, a contemporary Native American poet, born and raised in Oklahoma.


Eagle Poem

To pray, you open your whole self

to sky, to earth, to sun, to moon;

to one whole voice that is you.


And you know there is more

that you can’t see, can’t hear, can’t know Except in moments steadily growing

and in languages that aren’t always sound but other circles of motion;

Like eagle, that Sunday morning over Salt River circled in blue sky and wind

Swept our hearts clean with sacred wings.


We see you, see ourselves, and know that we must take the utmost care

and kindness in all things.


Breathe in, knowing we are made of all this and breathe, knowing we

are truly blessed because we were born and die soon within a true

circle of motion.


Like eagle, rounding out the morning inside us, we pray that it will

be done in beauty, in beauty.

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