Outside, one woman’s hammer strikes wood,
spikes reluctantly give way.
Bare hands cut planks, pound nails,
A floor appears where holes once gaped.
The carpenter takes pride in her skill.
Inside, I scent the wood with peppermint oil.
Together, we fashion a mosaic of mosses.
from rotting deck planks,
flattened tree fronds
breathe emerald air,
carpet the fragrant ground
beneath the stairs…
elf house, once charged by a child’s vision,
rises out of granite stone. Below,
water spills over mica-speckled rocks.
Once a Rainbow Serpent
carved a sinuous path to the sea through glacial ice.
Today this astonishing portrait
of Natural Beauty is mirrored by deep blue sky.
Dressed in vibrant lime and luminous beryl
a diaphanous veil
shields the Goddess of Nature
from prying eyes.
This beneficent Wild Mother
shapes her spiral story in Stillness,
repeats the glyph with each unfurling leaf…
The Voices of the Forest share secrets in Cedar Hollow.
Needles, leaves, trunks, gnarled roots all sing at once*
A slight breeze stirs wind chimes; tree songs harmonize
with tumbling waters.
Two women envision cedar and ferns in sharp silhouette.
Purple on green.
The child sees the ground covered with stars and flowers.
Out of the cracks of childhood abandonment
dreaming imagination takes hold—
A fiery phoenix poised for first flight
emerges out of the ashes of longing and loss.
A ruby-throated hummingbird sips sweet nectar,
witness to the power of hope
to resurrect what once was dead.
Hawks fly through night visions.
Cardinals herald the roar of pure feeling.
The child hums love songs to Bears
who slumber in cool sphagnum bogs, appearing at nightfall.
Earth grounded, these Wisdom Keepers,
Plant Healers, keep instinct intact.
As Shamans of the Forest Folk,
Bears know the way.
All we must do is follow.
***Hemlock, spruce, balsam, cedar, alder, crabapple, moose maple, maple, oak, and witch hazel—the idea behind this notation is that there is power in the naming of individual trees—seeing is the first step towards developing interspecies relationship.