Bottomland Hardwoods

turkey-tail

fruiting turkey tail

Bottomland Hardwoods

the leaves
crunched beneath
our feet
as we kept pace
with the afternoon sun.

a sharp call
like a tropical bird
echoed across the forest.

we froze
for reasons we didn’t know.

“pileated woodpecker,” i said.

and then, we continued on…

small things
caught my eye
like the glossy red dogwood berries
glimmering on the ground
of matte, brown leaves.

coyote scat
full of small bones
and tangled hair.

we walked to a cold creek
paw prints
roots exposed
with trees dangling on edge.

gleaming stones
petrified wood
clay ochres
that you could rub on your skin
to wake up something
sleeping.

a crow the next time.
sounded like he tattled on someone.
maybe us.

mushrooms emerged from
cold, late-fall logs
ready to turn
rot into life.

when we stepped
fully
into the bottomland hardwoods
i said,

“see how many pines there are?
not many.
not many at all.
this is what
central Mississippi forests
used to look like.”

we knew we were in a special place.
beech trees reminded us.

and then,
goldenrod gone to seed
reached out at the forest edge
ready to scatter to the wind.

the light was hitting it just right
and i had to take a picture

to help remember.

December 2016, Noxubee Hills, Mississippi
By Lindsay Wilson

 

Advertisements

2 thoughts on “Bottomland Hardwoods

  1. Oh my goodness, Lindsay, this is so gorgeous and makes me almost painfully nostalgic for more time in the woods. You write of it so intimately, express it’s voice through yours. Oh I love this.

    • Thanks dear one ❤ I'm so glad this inspired you to go romping in the woods… I appreciate the feedback! Poetry is always such a vulnerable thing…

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s