Like a Mountain

I used to be grounded like the wind

– which is to say, not grounded at all

But, rather, floating and flitting,

Restless and furious,

Impossible to hold

Like a sigh, or the drawing of breath before a scream

and the scream itself.

Wind moves you, but you cannot hold it

Changes landscapes but is not changed –

It is a force . . . but not a feeling.

Not like fire,

That hot, consuming, branding thing that draws you in and burns itself

Into your heart –

Fire, like stars and volcanoes

Light we set our paths by but keep a distance from

Lest it destroy us –

I was grounded like fire, once, too, and I suspect I may be again

From time to time

Because once the sparks are in your blood they never truly burn out. They wait:

Spirit embers, like latent inspiration, ready to burst forth when called upon, or

needed most, or – and especially – when they are left

Untended overlong.

So I have fire in my blood

and feel the wind in my hair –

Not tugging at my feet, anymore,

Not tearing at my clothes and picking me up

to fly, not like that

But like a friend or memory,

like the scent of lilac and woodsmoke –

I wondered if I had become a tree,

with these new roots dug into the earth

and wind in my hair.

I’ve born some fruit and given shelter with

My womb and my arms and soul.

Blossomed once or twice and felt the seasons change me – like the way

Winter slows my heart, and how the long darkness seeps into my dreams . . .

A tree is steady, wise, and strong – like me – but, fragile things

Trees burn up in a fire

Break in the wind.

Through storms, floods, and fires I’ve stood

More like a mountain than a tree.

. . . .

(to be continued)

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