miriam halliday borkowski | sleeping under giants in a cazadero forest


“Sharing the water that
no one could ever own”
the geography could eat me!
could eat you! but
earth eros is conscious
listens to us
it was night—
until my eyes adjusted
the dark obscured their height
i arrived at 11 o’clock
walked past silent tents
some people in a
building still up farther off
i made my way over
to where it was dark
put my bags against 3
separated from the rest
my daughter dropped me off
exhilarated by the smell of them
i told her i was alright
i looked up
it was the first time i had experienced
the gentle ferocity of anything
so enormous
a solid centeredness
soothed my terror
as i looked
9 stories up
absolutely perpendicular
unless they had fallen &
gotten permanently hung up
delicate oblate leaves
sifting down the stars
i was in awe encompassing silence
deep-pressed blessed
i put my blanket down
leaned my back into one
said a rosary called the holy mother
realized how large
everything once was———oh
how the spirit took form
with the size of them
how forests are the gothic arch
leading the eye up
i thought of you then
had you seen this–?
i fell asleep
with my head next to one
every once in a while i’d wake
and exhilaratingly look up
with the same feeling
looking down from a high building
in New York
in the morning
i could see them.

for my beloved husband, Christmas ’92 – Miriam Halliday Borkowski

From BIG HAMMER No. 12, 2008, Iniquity Press / Vendetta Books. This issue is available by clicking here…

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