Upon Gazing Out a Train Window

My eyes
my whole Being
a live camera
with no film
to record or to remember
the thousands of trees
the vast dirt fields
the stubble
the long-ago-fallen trees.
Sunlight sprinkles itself
over the surfaces of
winding waterways.

No film to show
only my Body
the land
the furrows of
the fields the gray
The platinum
glow of our sun.

My eyes
My Body
has it.

Elizabeth Morana

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7 thoughts on “Upon Gazing Out a Train Window”

  1. Hi Elizabeth,
    I’ve taken this train along the Hudson River and I am always so inspired by what I see. Sometimes you are so close to the water that it seems you are riding in it. Other times you can barely see the water because something has been built between the train and the water. I am always awed by what I see each time I take this ride.
    Thanks for reminding me not only of its beauty but how its beauty sparks beauty in us as it did for you.


  2. Dear Elizabeth

    This feels strange but there is something here that happened in another situation that really gives me a sense of this poetry in a way I couldn’t if I hadn’t seen this man’s photo images of moving landscape that are so remarkable that I had to have it. And now, this experience of the moving train and the moving images seem as a spiritual journey for me taking in the world around me in a way that feels so different and yet my body is doing just that. Your poem describes what that was for you! Thank you, Kevin

  3. Yes, that’s true, ‘its beauty sparks beauty in us’….

    ….and I come back around to the sense that my whole body is ‘taking-in’ and maybe even ‘recording’ in some way, the feel of the hills, every little clump of earth, every tree–whether tall or tilting, the glint of sunlight on that leaf….that I ‘feel them’ as I see them pass, and I ‘feel them’ in my Body NOW as I hold all of that seeing-of-That-which-is-so-dear-to-me,

  4. Thank you, Kevin. This brings to mind that I used to (and still do) lean as close to the airplane’s window as possible to see the ground when in flight, and wonder at my excellent luck to be above the earth and to see it from this perspective the way only a bird could see it….

    …and now it’s the trains, which give me this chance to watch the ‘moving landscape’ and to ‘take in the world around me’ in this way, with amazement–the kind of amazement I might feel if great Angels suddenly appeared outside my window! But they are only trees, not Angels… right?

    Or maybe they are the way the Angels say hello to me….? The way the Angels say ‘We love you!” Could that be?

  5. Thank you Elizabeth for the beautiful poem! The images transported me back to a time exactly 5 years ago, the end of November 2013, when Tom and I travelled by train from Vancouver to Toronto … and back, a few weeks later. It is so true that the body gets it … and stores the memory … which we can consciously recall or suddenly the body brings it up for its own good reasons.

  6. Ana, I love what you’ve written and for reminding me of that wonderful expression you’ve implied, “the body memory” which, yes, “brings it up for it’s own good reasons”….I attended a recital last night of an a cappella group called “Vocalis” and they began one of their pieces with such an ethereal sound, it brought a strong, strong body memory and tears that were of Joy and more….which I am glad I was able to accept exactly as it was without explanation…..

  7. I love train travel!! It is so different from being in a car… I can feel the motion and the sound captured in body memory. The landscape rushes to me, sits beside me for an instance and then disappears into my peripheral vision. The sunlight through the trees has a magical sensation as it touches into my eyes – amazing how my eyes register the images and then they become a part of body memory. Thank you Elizabeth for transporting me back onto the memories of train travel.

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