avenue of the giants 10am wed 18 june

Painting from Memory

You are painting from memory
Older than salt.

You suspected all along
We each have another name
Than human: a name the soil whispers
With our careful or not-so-careful
Steps on the seeds that sleep there.

A name known by the sun
That collects our thoughts
As it touches our heads
Until it strokes them white
At last.

Every road we take
Keeps the memory
Of our choices. (Even now
The river is gathering light
To remember on our behalf).

What might that river’s willow-sister
Teach us– remembering herself
So well she regrows whole
From her broken pieces?

And what memory
Does the giant redwood
We once leaned against
Keep of our momentary

Behind the layers of bark
That steady our backs
Runs the sap of life,
Remembering how
To bring home the rain
That slakes our thirst,
How to turn the sun
To the sugar that feeds
Our hunger.

Who is it, then,
Leaning spine to spine
Against the great stillness
Of this upward-thrusting soul–
The painter or the painted—
The weaver or the woven?

If only we might remember ourselves
As well as the world does!