Wednesday, August 09, 2006

Rivers of bark

rivers of bark run
creased and folded with time, each
its own confluence

crevices divide
widened by the passing years
flowing, not moving

pushing outward like
stretch marks on a firm belly
exponential scars

charged with an inner
urgent life moving upward
from roots into sky

branches bearing bright
leaves quivering to hold vast
unbearable light

one brilliant, crinkled
leaf unfolds without tearing
and turns toward the sun


Blogger Lhombre said...

Azulejo...Your continual growth as a poet leaves me without the appropriate words to describe this amazing poem. Like all wonders of creativity and love for one's vocation, yours leaves me breathless and wanting more. You have given this city boy a landscape with ground so fertile that it causes me to blush! Gracias Doncella mia

8/09/2006 3:50 PM  
Blogger Pat Paulk said...

Yes!! Grab the unbearable light and make it yours!! Well versed!!

8/09/2006 4:16 PM  
Blogger Brenda Clews said...

This beautiful poem, beautiful composition of yours, do enter it in the Festival of the Trees...

8/09/2006 4:56 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Very inspiring...Interesting that I saw "rivers of Dark" when I first glanced at the piece...

8/09/2006 5:37 PM  
Blogger Dave said...

I like this. You express very well something I've often felt, especially about very tall, straight deciduous trees such as tulip poplars. Brenda's right - this belongs in the next Festival of the Trees.

8/09/2006 5:44 PM  
Blogger alan said...

I can feel the life surging from soil to sun...

You are amazing!


8/10/2006 12:33 AM  
Blogger that dave said...


8/10/2006 3:45 AM  
Blogger Richard Lawrence Cohen said...

"Rivers of bark"" is a metaphor I never would have thought of, but having read it I think, "Oh yes! So true!" One of those things that seem obvious once someone else has said it. And the stretch mark metaphor and so many other details of light and life and movement in this fine poem -- so beautifully seen and captured!

8/10/2006 7:34 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

such a slow, graceful growth. about tree speed i would say. the equivalent of laying under a tree and touching it with your eyes from root to final trembling leaf.

8/10/2006 9:58 AM  
Blogger Yes said...

Perhaps you are channelling Jean (a la recherche de l'absolut) while he is "en vacances"? Can you borrow one of his archived photos to illustrate this lovely poem? I think he would be pleased.

8/10/2006 10:09 AM  
Blogger MB said...

Dan, um, I think you are making me blush with the generosity of your words. Muchas gracias, mi amigo.

Pat, thanks! We all turn toward it.

Brenda, thank you. And thanks for the suggestion.

TLR, that is interesting. I have a song called "Rivers of Light," which includes the refrain "rivers of darkness, rivers of light," so somehow your misread doesn't seem so strange to me.

Dave, thanks much for your encouragement. It was actually inspired by a box elder, another very tall, deciduous tree.

Alan, the life that surges from soil to sun never ceases to amaze me. Thank you.

cyclingdave, thanks!

Richard, your response is very gratifying. Thank you so much. It's nice to feel heard by you.

Anne, "tree speed" — wonderful! And yes, touching it with my eyes from root to leaf is what I was doing. You got it. Thanks.

Firebird, Jean would probably appreciate this poem! I'm glad he'll be back before too much longer.

8/10/2006 12:14 PM  
Blogger Zhoen said...

My friend Moira has told me she loves her stretch marks, like a tattoo, proof of survival, battle scars. I sent her this poem, so right.

8/11/2006 1:24 PM  
Blogger Frankie said...

This poem is so lovely and delicate. I love that final image of the leaf unfolding and turning toward the sun. Simply gorgeous!

8/12/2006 8:47 PM  
Blogger aa said...

Simple yet profound. A common praise to your works, no doubt.

8/13/2006 12:06 AM  
Blogger MB said...

Zhoen, thank you for telling me. Bodies that bear children are used for a much higher purpose and sometimes the story is inscribed in the skin.

Frankie, thank you so much!

Free spirit, welcome. Thanks for your comment! I'm pleased you enjoyed the poem

8/13/2006 8:10 PM  
Blogger Lori Witzel said...

Love the choices: tight small seed of a form -- haiku -- sprouting this up-to-heaven tree.

8/14/2006 4:19 AM  
Blogger MB said...

Lori, thank you so much. I love the way you see it.

8/16/2006 9:55 AM  

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