shivering the mirror

and what if
you grew roots,
awakened spirit,
became treebound–
your blood flowing
glorious amidst sapwood–
your body suddenly
magnificent, unhewn—
your arms branching
toward the sun,
Familiar to birds,
ancient, floating
on the breath of wings–
your heartwood
trembling, weightless,
awash in light?

A quadrille for dVerse, where De has given us the word wing, and for earthweal, where Sherry has asked us to speak for the trees. I’ve also used Jane’s Oracle 2 words as inspiration.

incorporeal

to be an observer
is more than a mere o
pening of the eyes–
you must vanish from the sight
of what you see, become
an immersion, a current
consumed by the between,
inside its invisible
core of light

Brendan at earthweal gave us some photos to work with for our poems this week. I chose the photo above, although the other ones are still on my mind.

now, when

what crowns morn
ing what binds begin
ning connects
endings to
portaled timelessness what re
news continues life

if not birds
if not stars if not
dawn if not
rain wind sky
if not fertile earth turning
into trees—what then?

For earthweal, spending some time with trees. My painting is, once again, inspired by Joan Mitchell’s tree paintings which I return to again and again.

fullness

Full was the first word that jumped out at me from the Oracle, but in the end it didn’t fit into what she wanted me to say. But it works as a title I think.

When I’m looking for images to illustrate a poem I search through old posts. I found some of these photos when I searched for trees in memadtwo, from a trip I made to visit my brother and his wife when they were living in Asheville, NC. Like me, he’s moved a lot–after 15 years and 3 cities in North Carolina, they are on their way back to Ohio again. So I probably won’t get back to Asheville.

But the photos and my memories of the landscape fit with the mood of the Oracle.s words today.

when moonspirit walks between
nightshading

listen like stones in the riverpath

follow deep rootblankets
through dark earth

resting at dawn
quiet beneath birdtendriled
ancient trees

breathing the bones

(at the heart)

may every
tree spread its roots interlocking
together to create a vast
community
bird-adorned canopy
meeting in
the intersected threads
cast by branches and
leaves    maple ginko
oak beech linden willow pine
walk with the wind as they sail
ancient stories of beginning
stillness echoed back

The NaPoWriMo prompt for Day 5 was to find a poem, and then write a new poem that has the shape of the original, and in which every line starts with the first letter of the corresponding line in the original poem. I chose Lucille Clifton’s “blessing the boats”

I was also inspired by an article in the NY Times yesterday about the wonders of the oak tree.

The paintings were inspired by the tree paintings of Joan Mitchell.

currents 2

Another elemental message from the Oracle. When I was looking for art to accompany it, I came across Sue Vincent’s photo prompt, below, and the paintings I did in response. A perfect match. Sue’s photos always have their own elemental messages, but this one seemed to have been taken just for the Oracle’s words.

how does path
wander through spirit

ask deep earth

follow spring
grow with ancient wild

riverroots

walk between
windsong and forest

full    green    light

You can see the original post, also a message from the Oracle, here.

The Oracle Answers Another Question

The Oracle has an answer to every question. This one made me smile.

Art is once again from the archives. It turns out I’ve done lots of art related to this theme.

How to make joy?

Embrace the rhythm of opening.
Explore the dances of trees.

Bring the ocean home–
listen to all the starsongs
that reveal what you desire.

imagining spring

tree window 3s

We have welcoming blue skies today, although it is cold. But the Oracle, at least, is thinking ahead.

tree window 2s

These photos were taken in March of 2016–March! not that far away–of Central Park, reflected in the windows of the Jewish Museum on Fifth Avenue.

are you dazzled
with green trees oceans
of air and sky

breathe in then out
surrounded by blueborn
mornings that spill
secrets and then

laugh

linking to earthweal open link weekend

the chorus of everywhere

tree 2

“Trees are sanctuaries. Whoever knows how to speak to them, whoever knows how to listen to them, can learn the truth.”
Hermann Hesse

stop making
maps—destinations
are without
meaning—this
journey does not follow roads
to faraway lands

look around
at the familiar
landscape—light,
water, stone,
the patterns of trees joining
wings to earth and sky

listen to
the stillness of no
time—listen–
suspend all
expectations—what you need
is already here

tree 2 close up s

For Colleen’s #Tanka Tuesday, a shadorma chain inspired by a quote from Hermann Hesse, selected by Sue Vincent.

tree 1s

In Praise of Ecology

trees s

calling all the names–
circles of words and being
woven into life

branches comp s

I greet the oak, the way
its branches frame the sky–
morning and evening
preserving the winter light
holding as shadows
the imprints of birds.

Listen:  they begin
the day—robins and blue jays
emerging from the cacophony
of sparrows and starlings–
and here again—my constant
companion, Crow.

We name our streets
after the trees that once stood
there:  elm, walnut, pine, maple,
chestnut, cedar, oak.  I wonder at
the words, now only images,
memories of  a lost inheritance.

Once landmark and shelter,
the empty vertices wait–
listening for the bearers
of seeds to refill
the gaps that echo barren
now, seeking new songs.

trees close up s

For earthweal where Sherry asks us to write love songs to mother earth.