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 – but,
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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