festivals of words and trees

Posted by Daniela Elza on Sep 26 2010

                                                “Imagination is a tree.”
                                                       —Gaston Bachelard

		        for Dethe

put your head 		on the bark of
this century			old tree.

surprise me.		stretch arms
around 	as far	as they will 	reach.

feel them	 extend 	into the crown	
feet split		into fractal 	roots.

now	push	a little further.		let 
the tips of	your fingers 	crawl

another inch.		last night	 you 
said		in your dream

I pulled a tree	out of		black 
earth.		 gave it to you.		all

you wanted 	was something to eat.
still 		you stepped inside 	the trunk

and moved its limbs	 as if 		life 
depended		on this dance.		

on our accepting 		the silence 		
of growing.		rings

as essential 	as 		the memories	
that inhabit us.		our home.

inside 		the skin of this 	century 		
we stretch			our limbs.

uproot 		one another	 out of
deep 		shadows.		become

resonant	drums.

Just got back from Word on the Street and would like to thank you all for coming out to the poetry events. It was great to see the poetry tent spilling out across the sidewalk. There were well over 30 people there each time I was there. I am posting below one of the poems I read today for this festival of the word.

inhabitions is about a special kind of tree and is featured in the book 4 poets (Mother Tongue Publishing, 2009), which incidentally has what looks to me like an arbutus tree on the front cover. This is a canvas by Ian Thomas titled: Landscape and Memory.

Why this poem today? Because a friend sent me a link calling for blogposts on all things arboreal for the Festival of the Trees.
I grew up climbing trees, mostly neem trees in Nigeria. My first love was a tree. This one might have been a huge chestnut in a playground behind Sofia University, Bulgaria. In another poem I say we are the children of the trees.
My blog header is of trees. Gaston Bachelard says: Imagination is a tree. Henryk Skolimowski says: Life is a growing tree of sensitivities. Trees are so integral to the architecture of life, both physical and spiritual.

So here is to the trees. Without them we have no idea what life on this planet would be like. At least we act like we don’t.
Click here to connect to all other participating sites through the KindOf Curious blog. Thanks John, for hosting Festival of the Trees #52 and putting it together.

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