“Under the rocks are the words, and some of the words are theirs.” -Norman Maclean

Ask not the earth, ask not the sky,
Drain not the firth nor pester, pry,
Strain not the stone, nor probe the airs,
To gain what’s known, amid what’s theirs.
Beneath the stuff, below a mask,
Beyond enough, beyond the ask,
Unhanded clasp and more than mensch,
Commanded Word, that core of quench,
Thus chant they low, from melded word,
Although they can’t, unquelled, unheard,
Creation sings, of God, of theirs,
That Earth He trod, the rocks and airs.




Neal Dachstadter is a poet living in Tennessee.  His work has been printed in Decanto Poetry Magazine (UK), Western Viewpoints and Poetic Images: the Great American West (Woodinville, Washington), Society of Classical Poets Journal 2015 (Mt Hope, New York), Rocky Point Times (Puerto Peñasco, Mexico) and The Lyric (Jericho, Vermont).  A member of the Demosthenian Literary Society at the University of Georgia, he deployed to Hawija, then wrote on Lookout Mountain, continuing with Delta Kappa Epsilon International.  Berkeley, Ann Arbor, and Athens encouraged him as a writer.  In 2015 he wrote in Arizona at Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument five miles north of Mexico.

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6 Responses

  1. David Hollywood

    It has a prayer style quality – respectful and contemplative. Thank you.


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