“The land knows you, even when you are lost.”
~ Robin Wall Kimmerer
Sunlight spilled upon the highest of the summer leaves,
Dappled silhouettes in a rough-cut canopy of green
As we meandered through overgrown brush
Down a thin, winding trail.
He was two, going on fifteen;
I was twenty-six and starving.
The trees knew me well, though unfamiliar to me,
Whispered breaths sang a soft, sweet melody
And my mind found peace in the hushed, vibrant wood
Where we hiked trails for longer than I thought a child could.
Not a fragment of my soul, in that wood, could be lost
The wood cooed truths to me about this love’s cost
And I listened too briefly
That I must end the day;
Fear stole me too swiftly;
We hurried away.
“The land knows you, even when you are lost,”
It’s been written before.
I know it’s the truth, now; I now know the cost,
I now know we should have walked out of his door.
When now, just as then, my mind threatens to freeze
I look skyward, again, at the sun-dappled trees
And I know now to run, to keep my heart intact
Since I tend more to under- than over-react.