Mountain Soul

Mountain Soul

Here in the mountains even roots climb

with energy that is male, active.

I am edgy and on guard, a stark contrast

to the serenity of these woods.

Light and shadow part the trees,

and I open to the wind’s soft breath,

the rustling sway of branches.

They are counterpoint to danger

I feel on the periphery:   a fall down

the steep incline, an encounter

with a sharp-toothed or slithering

creature whose habitat I invade.


Trees blur, and I cannot see

the path’s end.   All around I sense

others who traveled this ground.

How many remain. on the forest

floor after danger became real,

became death?


My buffered life and its illusions

of control are no help to me in this

untamed place.   Basic skills to survive

are not in my suburban bag of tricks.

Those survivors who journeyed here

humble me now.  I feel their hands

steady me, help to push against blue-gray

smoke of my own mortality.  I hear

their voices urging me to take

a deep breath, savor this moment

in space and time, let the mountains’

vast energy flow through me and into

the sky’s waiting arms.


—Cynthia J. Lee

Mountain Soul (email) 2

Mountain Soul (20 x 16, Oil, cold wax, mica, charcoal, marble dust on wood)


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