The trees taught me how to whisper,
While the clouds showed me grace.
The sweet little fawn liked carrots, like I did
And the birds were the ones that told me to fly away.
Tiptoeing on pine needles,
I asked to befriend the crickets
So they would let me lay with them at night.
But eventually, the blossoms had to bid me goodbye
As I kissed my last dragonfly,
The one that sat on top of the cattail
By my family’s old pond.
The one I would plunge into to scream or cry
And on my way out, soaking and wrecked
Would eat the blackberries that hid under the deck.
I used to hide too,
Under our soon-to-be Christmas trees
That lined my family’s property.
Those old woods feel haunted to me now.
A grown woman staring at grass
And all the memories that have now come to pass.
The streams all dried up.
The light dimmer than it was,
Calling it home, just because.
Nostalgia smells different to a girl like me.
What I lacked in lullabies and story time
What I may have missed from board games and birthdays
I was given.
I was given countless kisses from the rain
And tickles from the leaves
An imagination on fire.
Nature gave me the gift of listening
She warmed me with her blanket of sun
And granted me a life being forever young.
When we live among giants,
Like the great eastern white pines of Michigan
How can we feel like we do not have teachers?
The rings of their age
Their wisdom and their sage
They are the religion,
Our most literate preachers.
For my next breath, I will have the space to look up
The seeds are planted, and my roots are deep
For the sky reminds me to be big.