Sunday, June 28, 2015

Pilgrimages -- A New Poem by Noted Geographer, Stan Brunn

Sculpture on the trail of the Camino de Santiago. Click for photo credit.


                     Pilgrimages

Pilgrimages are to sites we consider holy

To make us feel liberating and more fully.

They may take us to a religions shrine

Where we hope our inner self will shine.

That experience may be to a religious site

Where lead us to do what’s right.

But “spiritual experiences” may take us many places

That may be “religious” with many faces.

Let’s not only consider Jerusalem and the Holy Land

Or healing places in France, Italy and rural Ireland.

But also sites and shrines in Tibet, Qum and Mecca

And those in Italy, Mexico and India.

Also Opryland, Cannes and Disneyland

And sites in Japan, Iran and Scotland.

Those who travel for eclipses and solstices

As healing and miracle places.

How about the pilgrimage to Elvis’s birthplace

As a “holy” destination many fans annually race?

Is the weekend visit to your favorite shopping mall

Really a capitalist pilgrimage enjoyed by all?

Or attending of a major sporting event in glory

That surpasses religious fervor with fun and fury.

Or a marathon swimming, jogging or bike race

Which requires stamina but brings spiritual solace.

Pilgrimages for many are a mix of fun and the serious

Spending money, releasing hormones and feeling delirious.

Some cities and countries generate much monies

By promoting pilgrimage tourist economies.

Which are far from anything considered religious

But instead reward the secular unrighteous.

                                                                         
                                     Stan Brunn, June 14, 2015

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