Methods & Muses Vol. 14
I took a trip this month.
I put on my shoes and travelled to my backyard to visit a friend, a Cedar tree.
Every day in September, for at least a half hour, I sat with Cedar, and using all of my senses to get acquainted, I wrote down what I witnessed, heard, smelled, tasted and felt. Yes, I licked leaves and ate dirt. I had a lot of questions. My human self was beautifully overwhelmed and I was not alone.
A few miles away, a woman sat with a Cherry tree, braving the cycles of life and death.
Near Thoreau’s cabin, a mother who missed her son felt comfort from a Birch.
In Pennsylvania, a woman embraced a Redbud, loving her tree in all of her seasons.
Across the Atlantic, a woman conjured spells with a Royal Burgundy Prunus.
A woman in North Carolina thanked a Black Walnut for slowing her down.
A woman in South Carolina fell in love with a Longleaf Pine, she couldn’t, and still hasn’t let go.
A man in Florida defied aging with a Poinciana, conversing until their voices became one.
A father in Colorado chatted with a Maple, thanking the tree for being part of his family.
In the Midwest, two women spoke with Sycamores.
One took off her shoes to ask questions with her toes, to learn where she might find her roots.
The other sung a praise song, her heart chanting, Thank you and I’m sorry.
In California, an Ash tree healed a man’s ribs and taught him to speak languages of green and light.
A Valley Oak reached out to a woman, offering health and courage, teaching her resilience.
Within a fairy ring of 7 Redwoods, a woman made a solemn vow to protect.
The rest of us heard her and joined her vow. We heard each other. I was not alone.
I wrote poetry with these beautiful humans as part of a class called, The Kingdom of Green, Finding a Poetry of Plants and Trees. Poet Nickole Brown guided us through this deep and challenging study. I encourage anyone interested in nature and poetry to study with her, or add this book, or any book by David George Haskell to your shelves.
Or simply sit with a nearby tree, every day for a month, and feel how it changes you.
Lovely readers, I hope to write more next month.
For now, it’s Autumn, witch’s season, so I’m headed back outside.
I have friends to visit.