Spring Work (in progress)
In the Root
by Wise Spring Sage
In the root
February, in the root,
Menacing pitch clinging along dormant nodes,
A pulsing dark in subterranean decay
Tlaloc before the sun,
Inhaling blue-blooded salt,
Blue -- the frozen cavern stretched
To the latched gate of a nameless underworld.
Rooted Cucurbita, Pisum,
Shuddered voices of the crystalline,
Concealed lapis, Gaia’s own starlight,
light -- bodies shattered by Her prism,
As snow upon an open sea.
So then, sweep the path home.
A Djinn ascends from a desert night
To a lone fire, burning eye, Andromeda,
Calling the eastern flame to rise.
Why search for aliens on Mars
when among the roots right here
is our strange little friend the pillbug
Soft Boiled Alleles.
by Wise Old Sage
Sauteed alleles, in butter and salt
Or fermented alleles, garlic, time and salt.
Plant peas as soon as the ground can be worked for fresh alleles by
Soft Boiled Alleles.
Minced alleles, with lime and
Pulverized, Smoked alleles, salt.
Plant peppers inside and don't forget the blanket, peppers get cold and
don't want to wake up for nothing but the best breakfast in bed. Fresh
alleles ready for harvest by late heat
of summer: waiting for roasted alleles
Soft Boiled Alleles.
Steaming alleles conserves nutrient content; lather in cold-pressed
allele oils and sprinkle with
Plant beans when peril by crystal water molecule has passed for fresh
alleles in time with the sun.
Don't forget salt
If you make
Soft Boiled Alleles.
by J Oleander
Frames by Asio
[[Paired with audio recording January 18: East Ithaca Recreation Way]]
A recording of a walk. For my context, read the poem. For your possession, never read it. I lay claim only to my words. (I especially own no rights to the sampled songs in the recording.)
me in Me in ME
East Ithaca Recreation Way,
about half Way.
I have passed a Runner
and side glances
i hear waters.
i am untethered
in the groundless LAND.
I hear Waters.
loud enough to quiet the rumbles
this whole thing is a whim
well, half presence
of the mind
could they be the same
these are the sounds within Me.
Crunches of Snow and Salt. they are the same.
Chirps. or Chips. i am not sure.
Echoes. mine and Mine.
Rustles of Wind.
Rustles of Leaves.
Bubbles and Wooshes.
Stillness. definitely not mine.
these are the sounds within ME.
he was there the whole time.
so was me.
they are the same.
‘3 stationary hitchhikers: opportunists or parasites, you decide’
- Wise Spring Sage
by Wise Spring Sage
The Lady, Worldbirth, The Gorge (clockwise) by Mondielle
Poem for a Blue Page
My blood fell violetly
I could see Jupiter- I asked for directions
Turned left at the Argon inferno
And there I was
With wistful green lemon trees
And squeaky wheelbarrows to gather my time
I could meander forever
Toothpaste constellations guided me home morosely
My soles were worn white from the ash
But the brown sun was going to rise
Regardless of my journey
Within the tall grass
is a beetle’s perspective.
Within that perspective
is a towering forest
Two paintings by North
Departure Color, Within
five pieces by Asio
Wants to experience external beauty
Beauty disturbs enduring interest
Begin with the amazement
of an observer,
A creature alive inside a stone
Amazement rarely felt,
An empty shell invites day-dreams,
Proposing the inhabited
Wonder is exaggeration
We accept slight amazement
To formulate dreams of stone
Two Paintings and a Poem, by J Oleander
The Carrot by Chipmunk
Photograph by Viper
Something by Meesh
Text by Dudley Patterson, Apache. Recorded in Wisdom Sits in Places: Landscape and Language Among the Western Apache by Keith H. Basso
Why I go
I go to the forest to remember the things I forget when I leave it.
I go to the forest to find the lost script.
We fill each other: the forest is my library and I its patron. Dew-beaded leaves and jeweled beetles are the footnotes of a Greater book, the work of a force I will never articulate.
We fill each other: I am an empty vessel, a framework craving the curve of the fiddlehead and sunlight played by finger-like branches; branches played by hands of sun.
I eat it, I sap it up. I reconstitute my cells with the greens and reds and oranges and tiny whorls of complex organization. My own clumsy patterns relish the existence of order, and I, the consumer, the perceiver, the insignificant steward, am full.
The oak is large because the fern is small, yet the fern dwarfs the duckweed... everyone does that.
The winter is taken on faith. Who can assure the spring? Who can promise that the DNA of millions will rush into new caverns of green and froth and pour forth songs and life and rustling and beating?
Why does the human spirit hinge on this so?
Does the Forest exist only because I can point to it and claim it fills me?
Does the perceiver create the subject with his art?
Roots stretch like tributaries, like capillaries vying into the grand membrane of life; like lightning on its path of least resistance.
The sky and the river were cut from the same fabric that evening, separated only by a thin stretch of sleeping trees on the opposite shore.
I’m not sure how long I’d been walking in those woods when the light began to sink into the river. The trees could have been a row of houses - they were dense, ghostly pillars elegant and dormant, but all cities look that way when they’re sleeping. I branched off from the road to follow a deer trail, and I was studying the patterns of ice crystals that broke and skittered under my boots when suddenly, I found myself in February.
I whispered the word: February. But it was barely audible over the chuckles of the unfrozen brook winding between tall trees. I perched myself between a jutting rock and tree trunk and watched the shards of evening light refract off tiny, icy bubbles and then appear again, farther up. Playing. Captivated, I let my eyes unfocus, and the lights on the water turned to golden orbs each time the sun momentarily betrayed itself from the overcast sky. What brilliant architecture.
“Where am I?” I mused allowed.
“February,” answered the tree I was leaning against. Her skeletal branches overhead shook themselves in the chill wind. I looked up at her, disbelievingly.
“You said so yourself! You said, this is February. Don’t look at me the way,” she retorted, defensive.
“I didn’t ask When I am, I asked Where I am. There is a difference.” I regarded her quietly. All summer glory was hushed beneath her rough bark and unborn buds. She was young: forty rings, I’d imagine, but still old enough to have a good concept of space.
“When? Asked the tree. What do you mean, ‘when?’ What is when? There is only where, as far as how you are.”
“What!” I retorted, “Do you not know of seasons? Surely you must! You blossom in the spring, rage all through the summer, and bear your fruit in the fall. What do you mean, “what do you mean ‘when?’”.
The tree looked down at me cryptically.
“There is only the warm and the cold and the rain on my body,” she said. “If it is warm and raining, I collect sun and I give fruit, and if it is cold, I sit and wait to converse with strange beings such as yourself. Why are you here, anyway? Aren’t you cold?”
“I’m escaping.” I didn’t have a more rational reason to give her. I started my journey without a plan.
“Escaping from what?” She asked.
I situated myself more comfortably between her roots and let my thoughts percolate.
“Society, I suppose. Noise. To-dos and have-nots and almosts. Disappointments. Strange ways of behaving.”
“You are leaving your kind because of your responsibilities?” The tree asked sharply. Her roots prodded into my spine.
She continued: “Does the ant leave his colony because he no longer wants to carry food? Does the crow renounce her parents because she does not want to know her brothers and sisters? You are the strange one, I think,” the tree said.
“But I am not like the rest of them – people, I mean,” I was a bit offended. “I prefer to be in nature. Here. Intentional. Where I can watch the water, learn hawk calls from the jay, and not be subject to smoke.”
“I thought you said we were in February.”
“We are!” This was the strangest tree I’d ever met. She couldn’t tell the difference between time and space, and she was acting as if I had it wrong.
“Well, are we in February or in nature?” she asked, speaking slowly as if I were a child. “I have heard of neither. I’d think after hosting the crows for forty-nine years I’d pick up a few things.”
I had to set her straight. I couldn’t believe I was the first creature to teach her the ways of the world. “Well, we are in both February and - well, yes. We are in nature.”
“Then tell me where one starts and the next begins, why don’t you. I’ll stay rooted in my sandy soil. That is where I belong, and I am certain of that. You, I suppose, are free to spend your sun wandering aimlessly and spinning strange tales and telling good folks they aren’t where they grew. Where is nature, by the way? Is it beyond the clay? Past the loamy stretch? I know that bit goes on for a while.”
“Nature isn’t a place. It's the opposite of society. It’s the wilderness. You must know… ”
She looked back at me blankly.
“No, I’m afraid I don’t. You have a very strange spatial perception, young one. You should talk to the crows. Or the warblers. They could teach you a few things.”
“I think my ideas are just fine,” I retorted. “You’re lucky, you know. To be out here. And not to be in there. In the park. The trees in there, I’m sure, would much rather be in nature.”
“My brothers and sisters? If they’re breathing, they’ll survive. If their roots are firmly planted and they experience the rain, they’ll be fine. A thing must be said about the quality of the soil, too, but we are mostly resilient. We take what we can get. Isn’t that how most people are?”
The tree thought for a moment. “So. You are leaving the city, you say? I don’t think you can really leave the city. Well, you can leave mine, perhaps. But then you will be in the city of the pines, and perhaps then the mountain laurel, and we all know how that goes. That goes on a long time. And the deer, well, they have cities all over everyone else. So do the ants. Is there no city in the wilderness?”
“You are describing the wilderness. The deer and ants and trees are all in the wilderness, a place where there is no order. Like here.”
“There is plenty of order here, young one! You, I’d say, have no order, leaving your own city. All of those things you call wilderness are there, too. You know - speaking about cities is silly. Perhaps we should speak about the soil beneath. I wouldn’t do very well in the clay. That is the true order of things.”
“You just think of it differently,” I told the tree.
“I suppose,” she repeated. “Why do you want to be different from your own kind so much, anyway?”“They destroy cities without… any sort of regret,” I informed her, hoping she’d understand the word. “They are changing the way that our very world functions. The seasons - and you may have to just assume they exist - are shifting, the earth is warming, the oceans are rising. You’ll be moving north soon.”
“I’m not moving anywhere.”
“Your kind will. And my kind - well, if they continue on like they are, they will probably not survive the next thousand years.”
“Perhaps they won’t,” said the tree. “I watch the ants, you know. It starts with a few. They build a hill, then another. Sometimes they build in me. And if they do, they partition off my branches into cities. Empires. Sometimes the colonies grow very large. They fight, they steal each others’ queens, they run out of grubs. They starve. They do this again and again. I am still here.”
They haven’t riddled you through, yet.
I suddenly felt very cold. The tree was quiet, and I heard a jay somewhere behind her in the dark woods. An alarm call. The night had descended while we spoke, and along the road, tall highway street lamps made a sparse path back towards civilization.
I should head back, I thought. I’m sure I shall return, though. And you… well, you’ll be here. Yes.
As I made my way back down the highway, I thought of the thin concrete, and underneath it, the sprawling roots. And the larvae dormant under February’s grip. Underneath that, I imagined the loam and the clay and the bedrock interlocking silently, and far under that, the heat of the Earth stretching all the way down, unbending, down and then up, to another tree, another season, another city.
A painting, an ink, a fabric by Tuesday
Reflections; A Distorted Mirror, Replaced by a Plane Mirror
How should I spend this day?
Crossed off to-do lists piling up in my agenda
working on inspired passion or out of obligation
Am I in the right place?
Who decides what I do from here?
My brain is clouded with extraneous thoughts
Inhibiting my daily, nighttime reflections
In this moment
the distant sound of laughter among groups of newly freed students brings me an odd sense of stillness
“You are free,” I hear through a whisper
Emanating from the back of my mind
I ended the journal entry early
The next morning
The sound of construction vehicles begins to circulate through my room,
The sound originating from outside of my window
The walls are reflecting the light from the morning sun
Coffee pot brewing
Another day of interrupted zoom class
My sense of inner peace is shaking
Notice and become consciously aware of your thoughts in this moment
Realize the places you should put your energy and where you shouldn’t
A new level of self-awareness is in store, adopt it
A reminder pops up on my phone
It’s from my Holy Bible App
It reads, “Matthew 6:34: Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. ... Each day has enough trouble of its own.”
That saying begins to resonate with me again, “you are where you’re supposed to be."
Marigold Shade by On the Loose and Asio