Water will return to the Rivers

The Storm

The night cast her lonely shadow

the tide blanket that made us forget

blind, choked up

at the site of our tree

her lost limbs blowing up like smoke

rounded rings on the chainsaw chewing the wood into the air

the storm ran her trestles through our house

the open windows let loose from the slanted rain

the wind ran through our sheets

whipped open our curtains

threw leaves on the walls

splat water, dirt, and lady bug wings.


The tree that fell was bitten off at the base

the roots grabbing the earth like my fingers

plunged down into the soil

open high-five clamping the dirt

and then suddenly as if my arm

failed at the wrist and twisted off

in one clean knotty break

pop. The root fingers left in the ground.


What took sixteen years to grow took four people a few hours

to cut up, haul into a thickened pile

in the side yard, two old neighbors talk giving opinions

the tree spread out like hollow hills

birds nest for a human to burrow into

our grass matted, our broccoli leaning

though nothing but the tree fell.

Our yard, an open sky now

our soggy house, wrung out

in the charming sky, seen so clearly

without any trees to block it.

Water, making its way to the pool in our basement.

Water that gives me life and new food,

water that has made my books into

wrinkly words, the spines growing open, absorbing

are now propped open, standing up on their own to dry.

It makes me question my ability to keep things.

I think it is a sign, mother earth is saying

something, the leaves in the street

will decompose in a nearby gutter

water will return to the rivers and

storm again, the maple tree will be replanted

take the place of the hollow roots

it’s mother left in the ground

The young maple will stand in her mother’s last poised

position, turning around, lifted up, where the wooden block

gave out.

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