“Driving West” by Linda Pastan

Though the landscape subtly changes,
the mountains are marching in place.

The grasses take on the fading
yellows of the sun,

and cows with their sumptuous eyes
litter the fields as if they had grown there.

We have driven for hours
through bluing shadows,

as if the continent itself leaned west
and we had no choice but to follow the old ruts—

the wagons and horses, the iron snort
of a locomotive. We are the pioneers

of our own histories, drawn
to the horizon as if it waited just for us

the way the young are drawn
to the future, the old to the past.

“Driving West” by Linda Pastan from Traveling Light. © Norton, 2011.

2 thoughts on ““Driving West” by Linda Pastan

    1. Hi Gloria, isn’t this a great piece? “We are the pioneers of our own histories…” Such an optimistic tone for Pastan.

      Ahhhh….I may have lived this a couple of times, yes 🙂 Once young, once not so young. Now my heart yearns to travel east, drawn both to the future and the past.


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