In The Forest

dforest

In The Forest

In the forest
she learned a language
a new vocabulary
not of words but of winds
of light, shadow texture,
a coverlet of silence
understood by newts and lichens

The moon knows this talk
and the clouds and sky
Where her spirit’s poetry
swells in worship of fern and toad,
a tumbling of wind words,
a rush of bird speak,
the language of sight and smell and touch.

A windy ocean in the trees
Spirits descending like fog,
The forest holds her grief and joy
And shadows by the front door
have no more power.

©photo and poem by caf

 

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The Watcher at Wood Duck Pond

wood duck pond

The Watcher at Wood Duck Pond

One day hiking we came to Wood Duck Pond
and there we saw an older gentleman
sitting in a chair
eating his lunch and watching
just looking ….. and looking

He might have been a Buddha
He sat so still
But there were no ducks
on the pond
or in the air or on the shore.

He was gazing at the stumps and logs
and surface scum
unbothered by mosquitoes
or deer flies
or gnats.

Froth on the water
reeds growing by the edges
stumps rotting in the lagoon
and not a duck to be seen….
Didn’t bother him.

I asked him why he sat there.
He said he watched for ducks
and whatever else might come by
maybe a heron, “it doesn’t matter”.
He just sat and watched, looking.

Not wanting to disturb him further
we whispered good wishes for his watching
and walked quietly onto the wood’s path
where we saw butterflies and snake skins –
but still no ducks –
although I found myself also watching.

by caf
Photo and poem © carole fults

Mountain Lake With Crows

White Birch Lake

A lake on a mountain
open to the sky
………        (the lake has given calmness to the crater)
receiving what comes
rejecting nothing
………              (it is deep enough to hold all)
A feather falls in front
of the full moon
………    (a gift from the crows who call between the peaks)
Still waters receive its touch
and quiver
………       (a lover’s touch on quiet skin)
Clouds touch earth
as she lies next to the face of spirit.
………  (in the mist, the lover’s breath)

©photo and poem by caf

Morning on Pyramid Lake

mist on the lake
What good is a day?
What kind of day is it?
When loons on the lake wake you
calling your name in the early morn
after the Screech Owl kept you awake
all the long night before?

What good is a day?
What kind of day is it?
When the forest breeze
avoids disturbing the mist
gathered at the shore
and when you look closely
at the tree’s breath you see Beings
looking back at you
from milky air?

You want to follow them
but you also want breakfast
and – whispering – the visions tell you
that they have food
that will feed you
forever.

by caf

Photo and Poem © Carole Fults

Coyote Wind

Jan Wild Moon

Coyote Wind

Did you hear the wind last night
howling up the creek
whistling in the snowy, twig shaped shadows
of January’s full moon?

Did you see the moon
last blustering night
brazenly brightening the deep sky
dark of clouds?

One time, when the gale quieted
and all sound was frozen silent
I slipped outside in time to see
a Screech Owl fly stage front shrieking
“Wild, wild everything is wild!
Everything is wild!”

The wind rose again as I huddled under a tree
It pushed me through a tunnel
into the reckless freedom of space and adventure,
shattering the stale sameness
that orbits everyday life.
It sang a new way into being and then,
returned me to my bed, freshened,
where the barking spirit of Coyote
stalked my sleep
and dreams dripped into an awakened life.

©Carole Fults photo and poem

Angel of the Labyrinth

Labyrinth Angel 1

I walked the labyrinth with your hand in my pocket
and your voice on my shoulder.
Your shoes walked with me
and we saw that there are barriers in life
and you can jump them sometimes if you want,
but if you do you find yourself someplace
you were supposed to be earlier or later
but not now.
The smoothest way in or out is to follow the path
without leaping the stones, though you know you can,
until you reach the center
where the way of return is not what you think
and is unrecognizable, although it mirrors the way in.
If you don’t follow the path you could be lost in the maze.
I heard your voice say
“It takes a lot of patience, but
what else are we here to do, except follow the path to its end
where it begins again, notice what’s in our way
one foot, then the other
breathing, opening, paying attention.”
I say “I’m so happy to have you on this path with me, so glad you return when I call you, and wistful when you go.”
Tell me a truth”, I say to you
“Tell me what you’ve learned over there after you finished the labyrinth.”
“Things just are” you reply. “Just look and enjoy, there is nothing else to know.”

CAF

©Carole Fults photo and poem

You Are Sky And You Are Beautiful

not my clouds with caption

And the sun said……

“You are sky and you are beautiful
You are trees, birds, soil
Your name is Water and Stone
Grasses speak in whispers when they hear your voice
Wind howls with anticipation of your approach
You are the maiden of darkness
wearing the wise moon on your head
and wrapped in magical starlight.
You are sky and you are beautiful.”

CAF

©Carole Fults photo and poem

Bittersweet

Bittersweet              

A Perfect Storm

Once a six month storm tore at her shutters
a hot and turbulent wind
pummeled the untanned hide that sheltered the door of a dark cave
wherein lived one of the world’s most illiterate hearts.

As she allowed the wind to help her dance in the trees
Her toughened pelt became soft as velvet
and as pliable as priceless leather
limp, whipped and limber.

In the aftermath of the thrashing torrent
tears kept her hardness soft
and as she walked in the forest
she saw Bittersweet
strewn on the path under her feet
and she rested with her eyes wide open.

©Carole Fults photo and poem

Carrie

the-view-from-below_edited-

Carrie

She was a lover of Yardley’s lavender soap
and purple double petunia’s
She washed floors in a blue house dress
laced with small flowers
and crocheted rugs from bailing twine
and plastic bread wrappers

I heard she had beautiful long brown hair
that inspired my grandfather to write her love letters
on birch bark
although by the time I knew her
her hair was short and gray
and she said auburn is the best hair color.

She played with children
beckoning them through the woods
to a magic circle of peace where she would walk,
her tall sturdy frame leading the way around the path,
and if you followed her, you knew you were safe.

Then one day in my pockets I found judgments about
her judging me.
Now, I ask, how many times have fear and judgment broken
the spell of love?

If there is a lesson here
it’s that I wish I had struggled
through the currents of white faced fear
to get to the other side
Just so I could have loved in time.

©Carole Fults

The Storm

After-the-storm-_edited-1

 

                       The Storm

Watery wind battered our serene and wondrous landscape.
Fury, darkness, and destruction
were waged upon our bucolic home
as the world we had come to trust rose against us
and the lovely trees and friendly stones turned into weapons
and death came to our neighborhood through raging waters.

In the morning, in the quiet after the hurricane
a tiny buzzing like a bee outside the window,
a flash of a ruby throat
and neon body hovering in the air.
A hummingbird, all of an inch long,
appeared at the feeder,
his biggest need being for breakfast
and a quick trip to a neighboring Petunia blossom.

Where I wondered did he go for refuge in the storm?
How did he manage to live through the nightmare
that destroyed those much larger than himself?

And I think about the children who are battered,
deserted and denied –
where do they go for warmth and hope and loving hugs and safety?
They have, I hope, as does the hummingbird at my window
hearts born resilient
tempered in the fires of loss
and transformed by the power of truth.

©Carole Fults