Iron Red Arbutus

The incoming tide is raised by a northerly breeze
in flares of white across the spreading channel,
the water muted gray like autumn’s sky
with hints of light behind soaring gulls;
descent begun in rusted leaves of the nootka rose
and winter’s pull into long nights
with the mystery of dreams.
I follow the path of retreat,
pleasure in the slowing pace,
letting go like iron red arbutus
shedding bark to pale olive green,
roots extending into dark wet loam
lifting upward the knowledge of silence.



6 Responses to “Iron Red Arbutus”

  1. Nancy Rose Meeker says:

    A palpable stillness.

    I love these lines:

    roots extending into dark wet loam
    lifting upward the knowledge of silence.

  2. Athena Coleman says:

    I love that phrase “the knowledge of silence”. For me, the solace of silence is what mends my soul and heals my heart. I can no longer think of any of your poems as a favorite, each builds on the next and I find it replenishing to be able to read them. Bless your generosity of spirit for sharing them. The photographs are gorgeous!

  3. Bill Dare says:


  4. Pichay says:

    The quiet rise of an incoming tide teaches me about respect for the land, like my Thai neighbors stopping their task when a monk strolls by, giving the wie bow of quiet respect. The tide gently pushes across the flats, and up streambeds to a known turning point. Then, just as quietly, with the same respect takes leave to return to it’s ocean home. That respect lingers in my heart, as I direct it to Earth Mother and Father Sky. We are all players in this daily grand Act.

  5. dennis lopez says:

    ah wash down the in-curving cacaphony of white noise
    of daily life of TV and all the rest
    of anxious people tailgating & on the cellphone
    and smoking
    of the nonsense we are offered
    for sustenance

  6. Andrew Shier says:

    I love the stillness that permeates this poem, and also the sense of tangible rhythm as we enter the time of the approaching winter soltice.

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