Sunday, September 24, 2017

Does the Leaf Still Believe

by Catherine McGuire

in the tree when it’s fallen?
Lying on the grass, first brittle
then slime? Does it recall
its brash emergence,
a rice kernel bud reaching out, slurping
the rain’s nectar, the sun’s manna?
A kin to the others rustling alongside
but never a clone, a copy –
did it glory in that extra green vein,
or the tiny twist of its edge?
And now discarded, pushed off
by new buds, useless except
as mulch, new soil born of the slime.
Regret or content? So much hangs
on what story we’re told.

The Lyre Bird

by Yvonne Vinstra

Where human greed and commerce mix and merge
Trees fall, birds lose, such is the lyre bird.
Alone he sings his own departing dirge.

His forest lost, he must sing out on verge
Of death but still he sings the sounds he’s heard
Where human greed and commerce mix and merge.

If he could only comprehend, his mind would surge
With knowledge that his song is quite absurd.
Alone he sings his own departing dirge.

No more does mimicing lovers sighs purge
Their passion, he sings only chainsaws’ words
Where human greed and commerce mix and merge.
Alone he sings his own departing dirge.

Sunday, September 17, 2017

August Campfire

by Jessica McKenna

Who knows which bark
cracks before us now,
castoff limb from
hurricane, or ill-use,
dropped to the floor
among twigs and veined
leaves from yesteryears,
dried, and set to light
by wood from someone
else’s grove. It glows,
and the oaks and maples
make high walls
to keep the shadows in.

"The pheasants, ships of the forest"

by Margarita Serafimova

The pheasants, ships of the forest,
in voices dense, green, bearded,
utter cries, trumpeting
that other life is coming,
we are coming.

Wednesday, September 13, 2017

Deep Green

by Taylor Graham

They used to haul logs to the mill
across this gorge, landscape of “unfavorable
configuration” for the projects of man.
But Cable Road still twists down-canyon,
into a maze of pine and cedar, big-leaf maple
so dense, we’re descending into dark.
Dirt tracks skitter off the one-lane, disappear.
Somewhere in green, the South Fork
conceals its bear and cougar, its coyote finder-

Sunday, September 10, 2017


by Jessica McKenna

Scent of fish, wriggling
still-wet-alive and how
like a fish, you glide
deep in water-folds,
buried dark where light
streams, and fails, then
up to the sky, as if
water-silk couldn’t
let any life die.

Living Fences

by Suzanne Cottrell                                                                  

Red River Valley natives
Served as prairie borders
Desired, functional, respected
Osage orange trees

Branches bowed, interwoven
Burly, protective thorns
Excessively furrowed bark
Dense, sturdy hardwood
Disease, pest, rot resistant
Lemon-yellow heartwood

Female trees bore softball-sized,
Lime, warty fruit, hedge apples
Grooved, resembling human brains
Fleshy sphere with sticky, milky sap
Multitude of husk-wrapped seeds
Squirrels’ prized snacks

Replaced by barbed wire,
Electric fences
Now obsolete, undesired,
Yard’s nuisance

Wednesday, September 6, 2017

"Brown feathers are gleaming"

by Margarita Serafimova

Brown feathers are gleaming,
the eagles are coming down over the forest,
purple forest, bare forest.

Standing forest, naked forest
in purple shadow, an autumnal slope.
The eagles are passing.

Sunday, September 3, 2017

Off Caldor Road

by Taylor Graham

Forest unravels the old logging spur
since the last load was hauled away.
Here’s hint of a trail to Clear Creek
where someone had a mining claim
and left a frying pan with no handle.
Now it draws wilderness about itself
as creek flows down through gorge
to flatlands as if forever. Yew trees
cling to morning light, their rustle
different but akin to ponderosa
and incense cedar. So many green
voices answering the river.


by Arthur Mitchell

In blue heron’s eye
the Autumn moon climbs the sky

Saturday, September 2, 2017