By | 13 May 2024

(i) How to hug a tree

Find the widest patch of parkland,
the longest line of trees.

Walk the path between them,
like a sergeant major—
walk until your rhythm
all notions of hierarchy.

Notice how the trunks are spangled
pale green,
as if the heartwood
is imagining
how to live at its rim.

Sprawl yourself under a canopy.
Let its green wind
rinse clean through you.

Travel your eyes along each speckled limb,
each tracery of tiny branches,
the internet of green.

Observe how its leaves sift sunlight,
how it sounds like water
running upwards.

Yet, when the sun slips,
a tree empties itself
of light and air, unhitches from the sky.

And binds, densely, to the earth.

Lay your spine down
among its roots, and stay,
for as long as you can forget

how to stand up and walk away.

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