She’s in the Trees

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“So was I once myself a swinger of birches.
And so I dream of going back to be.
It’s when I’m weary of considerations,
And life is too much like a pathless wood
Where your face burns and tickles with the cobwebs
Broken across it, and one eye is weeping
From a twig’s having lashed across it open.
I’d like to get away from earth awhile
And then come back to it and begin over.
May not fate willfully misunderstand me
And half grant what I wish and snatch me away
Not to return. Earth’s the right place for love:
I don’t know where it’s likely to go better.
I’d like to go by climbing a birch tree,
And climb black branches up a snow-white trunk
Toward heaven, till the tree could bear no more,
But dipped its top and set me down again.
That would be good both going and coming back.
One could do worse than be a swinger of birches.”

This is the story of a wild girl
With skinned knees and tangled hair
Inside her there dwelt a pearl
She didn’t know was there

It had begun as a lump of coal
And through pressure began to take shape
It would become lovely to behold
She knew nothing of her fate

The pressure came in the form of sorrow
She learned much of loneliness and pain
Nights she prayed for no tomorrow
Seeking refuge in the rain

She embraced every storm
Never asked “why me?”
and so the a small pearl took form
Only a shadow of what it would be

She took solace in the branches of trees
And the worlds within a book
Wrapped in a cocoon no one could see
Her mind was a haven impossible to hook

Years passed and the storms gave their best
A woman has grown from that little girl
She’s still in the trees, they are her rest
A smile in her eyes, for she knows of the pearl.

-LM Jones
(Quote: Robert Frost: Birches)

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The Story of My Tree

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I know what you must think
When you see my barren limbs.
You see an old tree that looks dry and wasted.
It’s true that my leaves had fallen, seemingly, never to return
And the bloom of my youth is a fuzzy dream that
Floats on the edges of memory.

Aw, but you are wrong! I am far from dead!
And I’m not just any tree, I was chosen for a special purpose!
I know that somewhere out there I have not been forgotten.
So sit awhile with me and if you listen,
With more than ears, I will tell you a story.
I will tell you about my girl.

I remember it was a bright spring morning,
And my friends, the birds, were just stirring from my branches.
When, suddenly, they leapt to the air in a flurry of fright
As a man climbed onto one of my great arms.
He shimmied to the center just above an elbow
And began to fasten something there.

In that moment I wanted nothing more than to buck him to the ground!
The man jumped down when he had finished
And stood there admiring his handiwork with pride.
The new weight was strange and unbalanced.
In a furry I wondered why this man had tread upon me
And ruined my beauty with this thing!

The air around me filled with the most horrifying shrieks.
It was as if banshies flew around my head.
I felt a tug and my limb began to sway.
Oh, I could see them then, not banshies at all
But little girls with halos of golden hair.
My furry melted away to joy, as I realized, I had been chosen!

We don’t like the older ones so much.
For they come to tear and hack and take.
But, I had heard stories of the joy little ones bring
When they come to play.
As I watched the happiness on their tipped little faces
I stood straighter and more firm and felt tremendous pride.

Then, one morning I spotted the oldest of the girls.
She walked slowly down the path toward me.
She was focused on a treat in her hands,
But as she neared she licked the last of the ice-cream
From her fingers and smiled up at me.
I knew then that I was her’s and she was mine.

She would swing with her head back and eyes closed.
Her bare feet carelessly brushed the red southern ground,
And she hummed tunelessly along with the birds and cicadas.
I knew she was dreaming dreams.
I could almost see them
Floating up and up into my highest branches.
I imagined I could catch them there for safe keeping.

Once, she ran to me, tears falling to trail behind her.
She sat on the swing with her face pressed to the rubber of the tire.
I couldn’t bear the sorrow that rolled from her in waves.
So, I called to my friends, the breeze and birds,
And we conspired to comfort her.
As I gently rocked her the birds sang and the breeze dried her tears.

As time passed her visits grew fewer and fewer.
Until one day she never came at all.
I seemed to drift then into a kind of slumber.
Without the ringing laughter and spontaneous joy of the girls
My focus became blurred and my mind began to wander.
No one came to visit me anymore.

Once, I returned from drifting with a shock as I felt a tug!
“My little ones have returned!” I thought with a thrill!
How wonderful it would be to hear their sweet voices as they swing.
Then, to my horror I realized it wasn’t them at all.
A man with a saw stood below me!
I cringed as I thought that this must be my time,
but he began to cut at my rope instead.

I tried to tell him to stop, how sad my girl would be,
but he didn’t hear and steadily he continued until he carried it away.
I think I cried then, not saltwater tears like my girl,
But my branches hung low and my leaves fell.
I remained bare then, for I had been forgotten.
Not even the birds or the breeze could lift me from my sorrow.

Sometime later, it could have been days or years,
I felt a light touch upon my trunk and I stirred.
It was a cheek pressed there and I heard a tuneless hum.
It was her! She looked up at me, tears in her eyes, and smiled.
That look I knew so well.
She was older, and I could tell she’d overcome much.

In that moment I felt pride to see how strong she’d become
Like the strength of a tree.
She was sturdy and could weather the storms.
I could tell she had roots that had gone deep.
Suddenly, I wasn’t sad anymore.
She hadn’t forgotten me.
I knew that wherever she went she would carry me in her heart.
I would always be her anchor, her dream weaver, her guide, and her comfort.
I felt joy again, and began to bloom.
-LM Jones
-picture by me. This is my tree.

Patchwork Phoenix

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“She was made of all complicated things,
But she always had a simplicity
In the way that she laughed.
And that is all she ever wanted,
For someone to understand her
While she was out making sense of her soul
And the handful of flowers
Blooming from the top of her skull.”

Brilliant sunrise breaking through
The shadow of fear in my mind
Tangled thoughts have been renewed
I think I’ll explore what’s left to find

I suppose I will gather my scattered parts
With a thread of many colors I’ll begin to sew
After surveying the fields of my broken heart
My colorful patches will brightly show

Reds, golds, greens and paisley too
I’ll be a patchwork phoenix on the rise
From the ashes I’m made new
See the birth of spring within my eyes

No longer enslaved to fear and shame
Though the journey will be long
I have been sanctified through pain
Named weary no more, you may call me strong.

-LM Jones
(Quote: R.M. Drake)

A Jumble of Ribbons

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“She always felt lost
And it was beautiful
Not knowing how
She’d find herself.
For everything she knew
Was a speck of something greater.
And it was just a matter of time
Till all of her made sense”

I’m made of a jumble of bright silk ribbons
And somewhere along the way
A ribbon was snagged
Perhaps it was caught by Jupiter
In the vortex of his violent eye
And so, as I move about life
I slowly unwind
I feel the pieces of me
As they fall, scatter and evade
I hesitate to give chase
I won’t be led backwards
I suppose I’ll have to create new silk threads
In which to house my weary soul
But first, tell me
Was that drink made for me?
Do you remember how I love Gatsby?
-LM Jones
(Quote: R.M. Drake)

Someplace Beautiful

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“Warm me
Like sunlight
And soothe me
Like rain.
Burn me
With passion
And steal away
The pain.”

Spring is peeking around the corner
Can you see her?
There may still be cold days
But we live in the moment,
You and I,
Come Jupiter
And put your hand in mine
I’ll keep you warm
Even when spring is hard to find.
-LM Jones

(Quote: Tyler knott Gregson)

Spring is in the air

Heartlines

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“In Japan
Broken objects
Are often repaired with gold.
The flaw is seen
As a unique piece
Of the object’s history,
Which adds to it’s beauty.
Consider this
When you feel broken.”

How beautiful your flaws are to me
Lovely, the scars cleaved by time
I will line your mistakes with gold,
my love
No need to hide
I adore your golden threads
As they illuminate
What once lay shattered
Taste and savor the perfection
Of every moment
Don’t dwell in what was
Give no thought to what will be
One breath to the next is all we have
Not even that is a promise
And so our mended brokenness
Shall brightly glow
Come darling
Etch your own line of gold
Into the ivory of my skin
Add your own song
To the chorus of my sin.

-LM Jones
(Quote: unknown)

Instinct

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“She always had that about her
That look of otherness,
Of eyes that see things
Much too far
And of thoughts that wander
Off the edge of the world.”

“My instincts are usually right,”
He said.
“What do your instincts say about me?”
She wanted to ask
And didn’t.
She’d prefer to wander,
Alone, in her own musings
Than to risk him seeing her as
another…
brainless follower.

-LM Jones
(Quote: Joanne Harris)