I wear winter boots because the woods are still wet from days of spring rain. Saturated, the barks of trees have turned ebony-dark, mystical, breathtaking. The blackest trunks are those that, months or years ago, must have burned in a forest fire and fallen to the ground, or have fallen to the ground and then been covered by flames. A crowded colony of attached or unattached branches looks like so many paralyzed chipmunks—bending, looping, curling—as if a lava flow had frozen in a single instant. So much lumber that must be properly tended to! After fire or flood, what can be done with wounded beech, oak, pine? The local Haudenosaunee people must have known how to salvage enough wood for the year ahead: dry it in the sun, shave it, shape it, bless it.
The infant’s first dance—
with his mother’s cradleboard,
to the flaming songs.
© Therese L. Broderick 2017
Therese L. Broderick is a free-wheeling poet residing in Albany, NY. She can be found on Facebook, Twitter, Goodreads, LinkedIn, Wordpress blogs, MeetUp.com, or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org