Monday, May 27, 2013
We took a walk up one of the trails in the Pisgah Forest the other day. It was early morning and dew was still on some of the leaves. We were literally surrounded on all sides - above and below - with green.
We walked across streams.
We wandered through and beside and past all manner of ferns, mosses, grasses, shrubs and trees. Except for little slices of blue sky that sometimes appeared above - we were in a green world.
At the end of the trail we were greeted by this waterfall -- pouring down with a rushing noise.
The trees ahead and the bushes beside you Are not lost.
Wherever you are is called Here,
And you must treat it as a powerful stranger,
Must ask permission to know it and be known.
The forest breathes. Listen. It answers,
I have made this place around you,
If you leave it you may come back again, saying Here.
No two trees are the same to Raven.
No two branches are the same to Wren.
If what a tree or a bush does is lost on you,
You are surely lost. Stand still.
The forest knows Where you are.
You must let it find you.
An old Native American elder story rendered into modern English by David Wagoner, in The Heart Aroused - Poetry and the Preservation of the Soul in Corporate America by David Whyte, Currency Doubleday, New York, 1996.