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In the Woods

Updated on November 2, 2011
This is a photograph of the sun coming through the trees in my woods
This is a photograph of the sun coming through the trees in my woods

This poem played in my head while I was taking a walk through my woods the other day. I live on a 15 acre farm that is surrounded by trees - overgrown, dead, and majestic. The property has been in my husband's family for a very long time and the grounds are still littered with stashed bottles, old bird houses hanging from tree branches deep in the woods, rock piles discarded out of the way, and other things that have blown in through the years. Each time I walk through the woods I find something new and different. I end up coming back home with a renewed interest in the land, a better appreciation for the age of the trees and flowers, and a nostalgic feeling that I somehow went back in time by seeing the things from the past.

In the first paragraph I was looking and longing for something to take my mind off my problems of the day. I closed my mind and opened my senses to everything in the woods. I found a stash of old broken jugs, vases, and bottles buried under leaves and it reminded me of my husband’s grandparents. The area was very overgrown and looked like it had been forgotten.

In the second paragraph I saw my dog running off in the distance chasing bugs. I had been standing so still smelling, seeing, and listening that a deer snuck up on me. I heard her breathing first then turned to look at her. I was impressed by her size.

In the last paragraph I headed back home making as little noise as possible so I wouldn’t alert my dog to the deer’s presence – I wanted her to feel safe in my woods. After I got far enough from the deer I marveled at the fact that not so far from my back porch it had seemed like a whole different world.

In The Woods

I walked through the woods today looking for that special place

Of which I've only heard about in stories and seen in dreams.

I did not find that one place all during my stroll through the damp dirt

But rather I found it under the autumn leaves smelling of decay.

Old pots and bottles broken from the years shining in the filtered light

And a pewter-colored stone standing tall amid brambles too thick to penetrate.

My soul was running laps in the wooded lot and emitted glee as unseen elsewhere

Pungent dampness crept into my bones and shook my core when I heard a noise.

I had found a tomb of memories from past seasons long before my time

And I stooped to take a closer look then felt eyes upon my back that bore no malice.

I slowly turned and wondered at the site I had stumbled upon in those woods

As she looked at me and me at her I felt my heart race a little more in my chest.

Limbs swayed and branches broke as we each turned our backs to escape

Fleeing the dark hidden under bushes and sounds we could not place.

I found in the woods that day a magical portal leading to another world

Instead of finding that special place I found a special peace.

Spider webs of light flitted between leaves and branches as we moved through

Silent footfalls lingering on crumbled patches of moss falling astray

From beloved gardens and sleeping places that left me in thought for time.


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