The Woods

Be patient. The woods reward silence and stillness. In time, they become a forest, the sticks snakes, the shadows on the water's surface dissolve into fish, and the path you were on has become earth, solid ground beneath both of your feet.

Experiences movement would sacrifice, stillness reveals;
mere feet away, just below the leaf litter, the soil's surface, there is violent, murderous upheaval. Tiny worlds are destroyed and new ones quickly erected in their place. All around is death and decay, green birth, awakening and renewal.

I've even forgotten the leaf tobacco in my back pocket. Chewing it, releasing the sweet and the poison feels satisfying, natural. I suppose if there is one other place I'd rather be, it would be back in Pittsburgh playing left field for the Pirates. But those days are long gone, probably because they never happened.

But it is that kind of day;
where light softly gives almost imperceptibly to shadow,
and the darkness carelessly and easily surrenders itself back to the sun;
where never and always don't seem all that much different.

Junior's not interested in this poem.

He seems to be here for the band.

Running in fits and bursts, he stops in abrupt instances to stare at me with lunatic eyes, tongue falling out of the right side of his mouth, long, dripping half the water he moments ago partially consumed in madly ecstatic gulps from the river, and then tears away again, delivering himself absolutely completely to running glory, jumping logs, snapping branches and displacing gallons of water with single leaps, seemingly intent on disturbing any creature that might have otherwise, eventually, succumbed to my vision.

But I understand that, too. I live thunderously,
just not today.

And, besides, I've already got what I came here for;
I have solid ground beneath my feet.

© 2016 Tobin Smith