Poetry: Walking the Trail

Beaver Brook Trail

This poem is part of a series of summer writing I am doing with an intention on revision and length of poem with other National Writing Project friends. The prompt was to notice the world, while on a walk or hike outside.

Walking The Trail, Noticing

It’s in the pause of walk and mind
that you take the time to notice
the way flowers bend to wind,
a dance to a song with grace –
you settle in, slow down, listening
becomes an act of gratitude

An aged wall beckons,
stone surface all moss and lichen
and rugged, a reminder of those
who long ago forged out farms here,
divided these lands with rocks
pulled up from this dirt,
a straddle between time and place,
and the original people here
even before them

A leaf free-falls, green with red fringe
and orange veins mapped at the center,
a floater from a branch above,
and you love the motion of it,
the tumbling – the turning, and how
gently it joins its brethren on ground,
resting for its next act as nutrient
to nourish the soil

Further on, the river bends, then breaks
beneath a small concrete bridge –
you duck to follow the flow of water
into the dark, cooler air, unsettled,
the shadowed curves of smooth walls
knitted with graffiti hearts and chalk marks,
the stone pathway slippery under foot

You are boot-jumping roots now,
in through the wetlands of woodlands,
mosquitoes whispering in your ears,
the pungent stretch where thick muck
grabs and holds you, and this green,
an illusion of stability, of , of solidity, of steady,
but it’s not, and never will be,
of here where the tricksters await

Then, just beyond the trail, trees open up
arms wide at the edge of noticing,:
bright summer light suddenly spilling in,
a liminal space between this wild,
and not, transforming into transitory,
made complete by an engine motoring by,
the quiet of the woods left behind
for another day

Peace (walking it),

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