Oregon Trail Ruts National Historic Landmark, Wyoming
This dream the world is having about itself
includes a trace on the plains of the Oregon Trail,
a groove in the grass my father showed us all
one day while meadowlarks were trying to tell
something better about to happen.
I dreamed the trace to the mountains, over the hills,
and there a girl who belonged wherever she was.
But then my mother called us back to the car:
she was afraid; she always blamed the place,
the time, anything my father planned.
Now both of my parents, the long line through the plain,
the meadowlarks, the sky, the world's whole dream
remain, and I hear him say while I stand between the two,
helpless, both of them a part of me:
"Your job is to find what the world is trying to be."
"Vocation" by William Stafford, from The Way It Is. © Graywolf Press, 1998.