When I am among the trees,
especially the willows and the honey locust,
equally the beech, the oaks and the pines,
they give off such hints of gladness.
I would almost say that they save me, and daily.
I am so distant from the hope of myself,
in which I have goodness, and discernment,
and never hurry through the world
but walk slowly, and bow often.
Around me the trees stir in their leaves
and call out, “Stay awhile.”
The light flows from their branches.
And they call again, “It’s simple,” they say,
“and you too have come
into the world to do this, to go easy, to be filled
with light, and to shine.”
“When I Am Among the Trees” by Mary Oliver, from Thirst. © Beacon Press, 2006.
200 years plus
in my studio
a wood beam section
hard strong pine
from a rehab site
a house built
in the late 1890s
from its core
i can count
over 100 years
for over 15 years
i have studied this wood
what to make
how to honor
so as I do
it has life