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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