Old Growth

The wind through the firs sounds
like the distant thundering South Pacific
from our island home, yet similarities end
there, ruddy nose running from unaccustomed
chill and fingers reluctant to part
from pockets;

It has been years since I rooted feet
in forest soil, younger and more absorbed
with survival, and it seems I never perceived
sensations so acutely, my skeleton awakened
as discrete and frail in companionship
with these massive giants, finger bones clad
insufficiently in thin shrouds of flesh,
tapping on keys as I attempt to record
a tangle of sensations since arriving
on this northwest spit of land;

Old growth firs harbor a resilience witnessed
in few places, save the redwood forests
of northern California, sudden winds damage
delicate saplings yet they continue growing
apace if not more determined into curvy
arboreal titans that dwarf mere human
presence; only massive metal contraptions
conceived by the minds of men can conquer
them lacking, as men do, unknown frontiers
yet to vanquish;

Ordered chaos is strewn everywhere,
detritus piled up, living jumble of oversized
matchsticks awaiting one careless spark; yet
when fires once regularly swept through
these forests (lightning-scarred trunks bearing
witness), the strongest survived and soil
was enriched, carbon craved by undergrowth, layer
upon layer assuring futures for generations
mirroring the content of life on the surface
of a planet defined by science but experienced
as a living poetry only nature can inscribe.

16 thoughts on “Old Growth

  1. “was enriched, carbon craved by undergrowth, layer
    upon layer assuring futures for generations
    mirroring the content of life on the surface
    of a planet defined by science but experienced
    as a living poetry only nature can inscribe.”

    So true. Loved the last lines. Living poetry it is!

  2. The Redwoods are blessed by Mother Nature, as they can battle all kinds of storms and fires with the connections they have with each other. Thank you for sharing stunning pictures.

  3. Wonderful, Bela! The captures resonate with your words and the beauty shines through. I remember when I first learned that fire is necessary to the preservation of the ecosystem. They have “prescribed” burns here which didn’t make sense to me until I researched and learned why. I still wonder sometimes if man taking matters into his own hands is the same as mother nature taking care of business.

    Sending “warm” thoughts and hope that you are well!

    1. Great to see you, Lorrie! And I’m pretty sure humans, even with the best of intentions (which of course doesn’t always happen) are in no way a match for mother nature’s ability to balance her own ecosystems.

      Reflecting back those warm sentiments and hoping that all is well in your corner of the world! πŸ’•

      1. Thanks, Bela πŸ™‚ I am in a good place….able to balance my feelings with responsibilities that must be met. Time marches on and I want to live it fully each day! Blessings to you ❀

  4. Another beautiful poem paying homage to the trees of our earth. The photos here are spectacular, indeed. I have been through the Redwoods and these trees in your photos are quite big and one can tell, quite old. Thanks for sharing. Aloha!

    1. Thank you, Renee! Yes, old growth fir can be huge, but Redwood is king in the size department. Still, any old growth forest is wondrous to behold, for me. Talk about self regulating ecosystems!

      Best wishes for the week ahead. Blessings. πŸ™πŸ’•

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