In an Aspen Grove

Pepper Trail

Here I was born, October, my month
Season of fruition and the fall
Beginning from here, I grew
In some ways changed, but always
Remained and am, here, now, on this rock,

One body, one mind despite its disarray
One set of legs that pull me through
The world, one pair of hands to grasp
And feed my one hungry mouth
Within these trees, how strange to be

The aspens are a multitude, each
A clone, the grove an acre of organism
Most living, some few dead, breaking and rotting
Feeding the colony that lives, sends roots
Into the soft fallen bodies that thus regain
The many

Above my head, the leaves, particulates of light
Forever tremble, shiver the blue sky to shards
Golden and golden green, each limb hundreds
Each tree thousands, each gust sending more
West across the meadow, burning, then quenched
In shadow

And with the light the sound, ceaseless
Rustle and murmuration, the bare white
Noise of wind tuned by turning leaves
To sense, to conversation, to the hubbub
Of a community conversing in harmony
With itself

O, how lonely it is to be
In the aspen grove dark
Beneath those golden leaves
Speechless within that confabulation
Needing everything, and always
Only one



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