Originally published in Red Earth Review

I am a stump of the old woods,
my ballads sung by bleached rings
and the spikes of a splintered kerf.

You cannot see me, but here I am:
I am the myths bonding books,
the subdivision’s frame houses framing

hollow rooms, sixty-five
generations of goshawks fledges
in the space of my body left behind.

I am stump of the old woods:
conks flesh from my girth,
feather moss blanket catching

bits of sun. I am chill.
Lay across me. Measure your breadth
against mine.

Michael G. Smith  is a very-early retired chemist whose poems are forthcoming or have been published in many literary journals. He has published three poetry books, No Small Things, The Dark is Different in Reverse, and The Dippers Do Their Part, co-authored with Laura Young from their residency at the Spring Creek Project’s Shotpouch Cabin. He conducts workshops on the intersections of poetry, science, mathematics and Nature, and lives in Santa Fe, NM.