WRI -‘Mystery Bear”

When the birches

bent and split

like matchsticks

I broke too.

  Slender gray

limbs belonging

to us both


unsightly slash,

piled up

on the side

of the road,

our dying bodies

of use to no one.

And that was

 just the beginning

of the Winter

of Secrets

that mushroomed

without words –

too much

 left unsaid.

I put my trust

in young trees

unable to stand


under pressure.

When the end came

devastation lay

over the land

I loved,

and I was buried

beneath it all.

The North Wind’s

wrath tore skin

from bone.

And I feared

without understanding.


 prayers unheard,

 soul fled

 as body keened.

Secrets were afloat.

 I missed the signs.

(I always miss the signs).

Innocence is no

 excuse when moss and lichen

 have covered your tree

with age.

Love is dangerous

They said.


the trees tell me:

we love you

but it is not our job

to provide protection.

You must strengthen

the tree within –

Become willing to

 face an uncertain

 future alone.

We love you.

We belong together –

 even your dead

 are buried here

as you will be

one day.

And then


will  come

to care for

this land

you loved.

This Land.

After the Spirit Bears have called you home.

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