In Maine woods

Last month’s storm was a hard one
in these Maine woods,
trees hacked and shorn,
and felled before their time.
From mud -caked hillocks,
gifts of winter’s floods,
and disheveled piles
of last autumn’s leaf fall plastered now
against the trunks of trees,
the smallest fingertips of green
find new ways to the light.
Little threads of fungus
re-route through the gravel wash.
Mending from shoulder surgery,
one arm useless, I walk carefully
among the storm-strewn trees and branches.
I pass among the dead and wounded.
I won’t be clearing this path until
I have two hands and can swing an axe.
A giant limb, wind-wrenched,
hangs by its flayed tendons,
drooped across the path,
but won’t be moved; it’s still attached.
It’s silent about this misfortune.
But among its many-candled fingers
its tiny red buds uncurl anyway,
the doomed green leaves ready, regardless.
I think of ligaments that heal, unseen,
and life that finds a way.

Steve Garnaas-Holmes
Unfolding Light
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