In the Prelude to The Women at Point Sur, Jeffers writes that the storm he invokes
comes down from the Gulf of Alaska, “pivoting countersunwise” (CP 1: 241). I would understand if the word were “counterclockwise”, which would make sense — that’s the way low pressure systems rotate in these latitudes. But “countersunwise”? Can someone please explicate this for me? Is it because the sun seems to travel from east to west, and the storms, once they come ashore, travel in the opposite direction? I don’t think that explanation was advanced under the older forum, but it now seems to me possible. Thanks!
“Sunwise” is a term from American Indian religious practice (no clocks). It means east-to-west, so countersunwise would be west-to-east. Since the sun is not a clock, it makes sense even if RJ was not aware of the Lakota usage (referenced in Black Elk’s vision, I think).