Forest Bathing

Forest Bathing
by Frank LaRue Owen

Winner 2017 Homebound Publications Poetry Prize

There is a way of entering the forest
when the breeze of the trees
becomes your guide

when the cool gray-green days
and humid blue-green nights
become your own skin

where the unfurling paths
through the emerald light
become flowing streams.

Paths as luminous rivers
for your two uncovered feet,
salmon-like and aching,
to work out their
strange haunted yearning
for a home
whose vista
they haven’t yet seen
yet somehow know
just the same.

There is a way of approaching the self
without a heavy hand
when the heart-mind
slowly becomes unburdened by the past,

where the body
listening with the whole of itself
finally becomes attuned
to all the subtle happenings
in the realm not yet stained
by the faithless world of man.

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