Networks #poetry #earthweal

I open my palm 
and the fingers extend
spreading like a sycamore leaf
and veined in the same way:
this palm, this hand
has held hands tinier
more delicate than palmate leaves
yet with a grip
infinitely strong
we call a grasping reflex
literally clinging for dear life
with all our might
until the time we must learn to let go.
I will not let go my grip when we’re near the road
or by the train tracks
until you grow to recognise the boundary lines
between safety and danger.

I open my palm
hold it flat, against yours
measuring the distance
the similarity, the difference:
networks of blood vessels, arteries,
are the rivers running through us
and the veins run deep
as in the forest
the trees’ networked roots 
combine to form
a symbiotic organism
‘we murder to dissect’* and name ourselves
as separate forms, and separate from
these trees.

© 2022 All Rights Reserved.
*quote from Wordsworth’s ‘The Tables Turned

Written for earthweal’s challenge ‘Everything in the forest is the forest.’

46 thoughts on “Networks #poetry #earthweal

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  1. I am loving the dual feeling of connection I feel in this; I experience both the nature of the trees and the nature of our bodies and find in both forms of connectivity a similar art! Lovely. <3

  2. This is beautiful and makes me think how our lungs and the arteries etc are so similar to a tree’s. And a woman’s uterus is in the shape of a tree also. Fascinating. I love the lines about holding on till your child is old enough to understand danger and safety. What we dont always know when they are small is that the teen years are the most dangerous of all. Hold tight.

  3. Sycamores are one of the few tree species in Florida which drop all their leaves in winter and re-leaf about two months later – our only true sign of spring — and their leaves are such handfuls of glory. Palm to leaf here the forest imparts its wisdom into human love and domains. Well done Ingrid, very deeply felt.

  4. Your words are a blessing to us all. You speak for me. I see this one being included in the revised volume of The Anthropocene Hymnal. Yup. Tremendous. Thanks for sharing.

    On a different note: allow me to butt in here to give you the heads up that you got (well it’s pending still) one more book review on Amazon. Just sayin’

    Thanks for all you do. Respecting the aura I feel. Be well. xoxo

  5. Nicely done, the big hand, little hand, leaf. What if there was another way to stay related with a softer grip, a grip of comfort and safety for all?

    1. Thanks Susan! In a way, that’s what I was getting at: the newborn baby’s grip is so delicate, and yet so strong…

  6. What a lovely piece Ingrid. I really enjoyed the way you wrapped yourself in the connection of your little ones, their small hands, and the trees. It was a very lovely read, thank you. Hugs, Joni

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