Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Wednesday Poems: Tree

Wednesday, like all days, is a great day for poetry.

People sometimes ask when I began to write. More interesting, I think, is when was the first impulse towards making art? For me, it was an experience I had when I was ten or so. This is the poem I made from that experience:
Lightning behind tree. Image thanks to  Wikimedia commons


Deep branches the color of silt
against a crescent moon,
darker than the sky,  reflected
in waving silhouette on the bedroom wall.
It towered over the house, swaying
as the wind sang through it,
a lullaby to accompany the owl,
and the distant wail of a catamount--
like a distressed child lost
in the wood beyond the ridge.

I was ten and my limbs ached
toward the window. I pulled them into
the deep pocket of my body, an embryo
ready to be born into the world.

The heavy scent of rain
pulled moisture into the room.
I held it in my lungs
and imagined that the tree held my breath--
a continuing tandem of breath
moving with certainty.

Clouds grew until they covered the moon
and a rumbling began,
like the shake of God's fisted hand
the wind tossed the tops of the tree
the tendrils of my hair.

One drop shattered against the pane,
and another, a caucophony
of drops hitting the window.
Tympani rhythm
melding into a stream of sound
and gathered into the arms
of night and wind and tree.

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