Walk in the Woods

When my load seemed heavy and no one knew

I sought the shelter of the trees, thoughtful

Pensive shade dappled with sun drops as if

Hints of happiness just out of my reach

To sit among the young shadow-loving

Plants that grow low among the larger trees

Breathing in the calm of a unique place

A random perfect garden-scape of poise

Giving grace to a sad and lonely boy

As he kindled a tiny smokeless flame

And boiled a can of B & M Baked Beans

Trying hard to infer what it all means

Too many times the odd one out I did

Not learn but fought in vain my fate seeking

Equality where there was none to find

Through the knee deep snow I walked away

By snowmobiles suddenly surrounded

My classmates I won't say my friends stopped me

With a pornography peace offering

Suitable for an adolescent boy

But for me airbrushed skin had no meaning

For it was too late to be a boy then

Knowing how truly I was alone

If I had known what tortures lay ahead

I would have gone camping as I'd planned

With any luck had frozen stone cold dead

So spared those hard expensive lessons

Life was at such pains I should be taught

A long stretch there without a woods to walk

Just pavement that makes the lonely nameless

And decades of brutal mindless sameness

At long last then to green woods returning

Leaves of peace my anger turning

To wonder I could have strayed so long

From the woods that made sadness a song

Where all who need solace and peace belong

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Comments 24 comments

cindyvine profile image

cindyvine 7 years ago from Cape Town

mmm pornography peace offerings in the woods, sounds kinky! Cool poem, Tom!


LondonGirl profile image

LondonGirl 7 years ago from London

I really enjoyed this - thank you.

Have you read Bill Bryson's book about hiking in the Appalachian (sp?) hills?


Tom Rubenoff profile image

Tom Rubenoff 7 years ago from United States Author

Cindy Vine, boys will be boyz.

LondGirl! So great to see you! What was the title? There was one I read excerpts from that had a picture of a black bear on the front...


cindyvine profile image

cindyvine 7 years ago from Cape Town

How's the cycling going, Tom?


Tom Cornett profile image

Tom Cornett 7 years ago from Ohio

Porn...woods....genius.......smiling...thanks Tom. :)


Candie V profile image

Candie V 7 years ago from Whereever there's wolves!! And Bikers!! Cummon Flash, We need an adventure!

I feel as tho I, too, should say "Porn...woods..." or be left out! But you know this crowd and that's what we see.. the rest was stunning!

Thank you!


Silver Freak profile image

Silver Freak 7 years ago from The state of confusion

Wow! That's all I have to say.


Tom Rubenoff profile image

Tom Rubenoff 7 years ago from United States Author

The biking is going good, Cindy!  The fundraising is slow - because of the economy I think - but since I've recovered from my cold I am biking stronger, thank you! 

Boyz give the gift of porn, what can I say, Tom and Candie!  Thank you for your praise.  And everybody, take a walk in the woods!

Thank you, Silver Freak! I have that same reaction to many of the poets around here. HubPages has talent in the poet department.


Randy Behavior profile image

Randy Behavior 7 years ago from Near the Ocean

Here I go again. Sorry to be the downer. The pornography and beautiful woods escaped my attention. What I noticed, indeed what followed me out of the woods and is sitting here starring at me, is a lonely misunderstood boy. He felt estranged and outcast. A painful difference that carried on even when the woods were no longer available to temper it. So I'm left feeling sad for him.


Paper Moon profile image

Paper Moon 7 years ago from In the clouds

I for one head for the woods when life gets too heavy. A bit of nature clears the head and the spirit can fly again. ;)


jayb23 profile image

jayb23 7 years ago from India

Fantastic poem. Great work


Tom Rubenoff profile image

Tom Rubenoff 7 years ago from United States Author

Hi Randy! Once again you prove an empathetic reader. The poem is indeed a story of pain and isolation for which the character finds some solace among the trees, and when the trees are absent from his life, his life is like a desert. But hear the call to solace and peace at the end. The poem does not fight its sadness, but embraces it.


Tom Rubenoff profile image

Tom Rubenoff 7 years ago from United States Author

Hi Mr. Moon! I think there is nothing like a walk in the woods to comfort the soul.

Thank you, JayB.


blondepoet profile image

blondepoet 7 years ago from australia

Hiya Tom I am feeling a little lost right now I don't like this 30day thing at all.....I won't publish again til it is over...I will always come here to support you though through thick and thin.


Tom Rubenoff profile image

Tom Rubenoff 7 years ago from United States Author

Yes, BP, I am ignoring it. One a day is no stretch for me, but with training for my bike ride coming up I'm having to go to bed earlier and don't need the pressure. I'll miss your stuff in the mean time!


nazishnasim 7 years ago

"From the woods that made sadness a song" ... One day I shall write a poem combining your verses that I love the most! :D


Tom Rubenoff profile image

Tom Rubenoff 7 years ago from United States Author

You say the nicest things, Nazishnasim!


Montana Farm Girl profile image

Montana Farm Girl 7 years ago from Northwestern Montana

Bravo! Another touching poem~~ you certainly know how to paint pictures with your words!! :-)


Hawkesdream profile image

Hawkesdream 7 years ago from Cornwall

I think that growing up for many is a lonely experience, but out of that comes the beauty of knowing yourself.


Tom Rubenoff profile image

Tom Rubenoff 7 years ago from United States Author

Thank you, Montana! I enjoy your work, too!

That's true, Hawkesdream. My childhood is a major reason I'm a poet, I think.


LondonGirl profile image

LondonGirl 7 years ago from London

It's called A Walk in the Woods and is very good indeed.


Tom Rubenoff profile image

Tom Rubenoff 7 years ago from United States Author

Thanks so much, LondonGirl.


Dolores Monet profile image

Dolores Monet 7 years ago from East Coast, United States

A walk in the woods cures heavy emotional loads, a walk in the woods lets us breathe real air...lovely poem, Tom.


Tom Rubenoff profile image

Tom Rubenoff 7 years ago from United States Author

Thank you, Delores. It really does.

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