THE WIDEST HUES

6116B67D-C45B-408C-A274-7A15369D8AB0A Vision, seeing as much
with my feet
and my stomach pulling me up
the fickle hill
and over

While the web is weaving split infinity, each to each
I see what wrecks and wings await
at every step
well-absorbing me as much
as I absorb them

When Goodfellow hermit thrush,
that Grand Inquisitor, invites:

Have the exquisite marks formed upon you yet? No?

Then keep opening—
strive ye with death
and moonly silence

Not beyond despair,
but spanning both dark
and bright buffet

Form and fill
your unique dimensions, earthedly

stretched just so taut
and ache
the good ache, Dyeing
yourself in the widest hues

—Ryan Van Lenning

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You can get my books RE-MEMBERING: Poems of Earth & Soul, and High-Cooing Through the Seasons: Haiku From the Forest through your local bookstore, on Amazon or Indiebound, Link in bio. My book of mystical poems, Silence Begins Here, and book of love and erotic poetry, Wild Rose Hips, will be out later this year. Follow me @ryanreturntotheearth for ecosensual mythopoetic inspiration and @wildnatureheartfor my heart-centered nature connection & 1-on-1 inner/outer wilderness work.

 

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THE THRUSH’S ANSWER

38FA1E49-0084-45DD-A519-AA431BD46EA3The Thrush’s answer ushers in
the last of daylight’s questioning

In ever-widening loops he throws
his singsong down, and finally flows

through the finest forest fingers
and in my old ear-mind lingers

Dissolving all the daylong haste
into the slow of dusk’s embrace

We catch ourselves in melody
for there’s no place we’d rather be

I’m steeped in his voiced infusion
a moment stopping all confusion

Leave behind all fret and furrowed
brow with no thought of tomorrow

With each bright measure, each long lilt
I’m stitched into the biggest quilt

Pouring out his full throat woodsongs—he answers my most ancient longings

IN THIS DEEP

93FC754B-79DC-4382-88D7-A1CC22C300B5What could send me down this far
But your wild path bizarre?
Who could bring me down this deep
But your crooked steady stream?

All bowed over and needles fine
You curvy as the number nine
Stitched together in woodly scents
to pitch me in here like a tent

Red o red o green o green
I wondered if you heard my screams
Flow and free and green serene
I wondered if you’d seen my dreams

Branched like brooks like roots like lungs
Inside me run your ancient tongues
Your hermit thrush to tuck me in
Then golden-green to wake again

Redly barked and greenly packed
I wondered if you’d bring me back
The world’s noise had got me good
Until you whispered through my blood

What could send me down this far
but your wild path bizarre?
Who could bring me in this deep
But your steadfast summoning?

—Ryan Van Lenning
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You can get my books RE-MEMBERING: Poems of Earth & Soul, and High-Cooing Through the Seasons: Haiku From the Forest through your local bookstore, on Amazon or Indiebound. My book of mystical poems, Silence Begins Here, and book of love and erotic poetry, Wild Rose Hips, will be out later this year. Follow me @ryanreturntotheearth for ecosensual mythopoetic inspiration and @wildnatureheartfor my heart-centered nature connection & 1-on-1 inner/outer wilderness work.

THEY JUST KEPT LETTING ME IN

A5951042-2FCA-4B2A-9B04-DFF3FDFB46CBI finally stood in the lush truth of it.

I never walked so slow, never ate
so many trees
savored so many stars.

Dawn hung around my neck
like a sigil
the river stones emblems of belonging.

Some I in me had said, I can’t live
like this…but an owl replied, Yes.
Yes you can—an archetype
is breathing through you.

They just kept letting me in.

Everywhere I didn’t knock.
No keys.
No doors.
Ears as windows.

The living sky my heart-home roof.

Only the silent here of things
on the back of the map
where all the real places are.

–Ryan Van Lenning
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You can get my books RE-MEMBERING: Poems of Earth & Soul, and High-Cooing Through the Seasons: Haiku From the Forest through your local bookstore or on Amazon or Indiebound. My book of mystical poems, Silence Begins Here, and book of love and erotic poems, Wild Rose Hips, will be out later this year. Follow me and @wildnatureheart for my heart-centered nature connection & inner/outer wilderness work.

What the Park Brochures Don’t Say

51FF93CA-8902-4B1F-9FCF-4C2A7220F517Here it is National Poetry Month every month, but Happy National Poetry Month nonetheless!!
______________________________

Have you ever seen the color of the evening bird’s song?

It smells like joy.

It’s one of the things they rarely print
in the park brochure.

It’s probably different for everybody
but for me it’s a spring breeze
floating an orange and turquoise shell
out of an ancient canyon

It’s a red and yellow whistle
petalling through me like bubbles splitting
and swallowing themselves
out on the laurel limbs
of the twilight tree.

That’s the smell of joy—
the brochures don’t say that.

They do mention to stay on the trails
but they don’t mention that
when you walk the fallen log
stretching from shore to shore
of the redwood forest
strange things happen
with the birds
and the scents
and the hearts of the forest

They don’t say that when you see
the 7:30am fingers of the sun
interplay with the morning dew
hugging the gentle green arms
of the old oak
you will have to change your life.

Sometimes the truth gets told
and they say “Enjoy the Park”
So you do.

And the creek jumps up to kiss
your face
and the smell of joy
floods your cells
and you know you will never leave.

–Ryan Van Lenning
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You can get my books RE-MEMBERING: Poems of Earth & Soul, and High-Cooing Through the Seasons: Haiku From the Forest through your local bookstore, on Amazon or Indiebound, Link in bio. My books Silence Begins Here and Wild Rose Hips will be out later this year. Follow me and @wildnatureheart for my heart-centered nature connection & 1-on-1 inner/outer wilderness work. 🙏😀🎄💚

Until the Soil Of Me

1FD8C573-1ED4-4079-95F0-0D86FCF0A58AI was proven wrong once
again

Do you think I am done breaking down
the resistance?

A forest floor this rich doesn’t happen in a season

and I’m still hungry for dirt—
Obliterate the monkey bars!

I was told once by a half-farmer
to catch the worm I must become the early bird
and to join ‘em if you can’t fight em

I still don’t know if that’s
something to do with hard work
and capitulation
or with fishing and surrender.

That was my grandfather.

The other half was winter and whiskey.

It’s ok, all of us are split. All of me
is half of a half, and halves of those in turn

I’m filled with them all the way down
like turtles—
it makes of me many a continent
and the ocean washing over

Always building up
always breaking down
until the soil of me can grow
the whole truth

—Ryan Van Lenning
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You can get my books RE-MEMBERING: Poems of Earth & Soul, and High-Cooing Through the Seasons: Haiku From the Forest through your local bookstore, on Amazon or Indiebound, My book of mystical poems Silence Begins Here and book of love and erotic poems Wild Rose Hips will be out later this year.