75294C65-DE3F-4A0C-9641-53AA7BE42F3DAbundance will take care of itself

like those countless spores
on the belly of the mushroom
the shape of private parts
commuting on the wind.

But they’re not private.

They’re out there
for the whole world
in teeming pomp and pageant

like the passing storm
handing out droplets
to every eager passerby
not holding back anything.

So Yes, be the wetness.

Be the spore and storm
in boundless beneficence.

There’s no chance of failing then.

I Was a Wilderness

8DD55B5F-B1C6-4D7B-B77A-4476A530577E.jpegI was a Wilderness to my babies

My sons called me Unknown and
stayed aloof

My daughters entered the temple
to contemplate the Mysteries

Creatures scurried through my veins
and everything was a cloud,
coming together
and falling apart

The tales of a thousand centuries are written in calligraphy
across my shoulders

Tattoos dreamt in time

There were complications
and there were rumbles

Birth pangs among the syrupy moments
Wounds lasting eons

It didn’t matter if some mind
figured it out

Some tried and believed it so

Yet no one believed I was the fang and the puncture both

the grand opening and the deep penetration

the sacred burning in all your loins
and lion hearts

Some grasped the tail of my dragon
and learned to play

Some took a deep breath with me

Others needed to disown their flesh
and put me to sleep

But I cannot truly sleep

For there is no end to the dream
inside me

No end to desire

for desire is the mirror of awakening

No end to my need for you

No end to my need for you
to become a river
through your own vast wilderness
flowing back to me

To rest and play again


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
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.

Spiral In Beauty Way

59499619_317234725878934_8046223539278174835_nLet’s spin greenly into each other

Make a playful pact and sign it
with the green ink of sunlit trust

Let’s walk the Spiral-in-Beauty Way
Proclaim Yes the shimmers

Yes all the hues, old patterns and new ripples

Yes the great green garments of summer
and its endless faces

Let’s green our minds
and pour the old songs
into each other’s heart-mouths

Unfurl into each other’s laps
until we have no more defense
against the miracles


Dedicated to the ferns, Giant swamp lantern leaves, and the letter Green
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 @wildnatureheart for my heart-centered nature connection & 1-on-1 inner/outer wilderness work.

Bookends and In Between

40620D97-85B2-4BB4-900D-4A967B2426F7The bookends of your life
and in between
that one hovering tear
waiting to burn its way
to the surface
all these years

Those lips from which issued
what surprising tulips
what jagged rocks

Those holy hungers
in between
the prelude and the snapping shut

Those reconstructed memories
and silent demolition of darkest nights
but forgetting nothing

The bookends of your life—
Bright unknowing yowl on one side
A quiet familiar yielding on the other


F8ABE9F9-F6CA-4FCB-9DC7-F912EE7BD0FAThe emergences are conducting
their own journeys—
Wisdom teeth burrow out
into the world
Bodies are seized by monumental clouds
and the eyes of water click open
gazing up at the strangest birds

It happens whether I’m awake
or asleep—
the boletes pop their sex
through the earthy duff
ferns fiddle out their winter tunes

Venus rises as
bulky dreams sail to sea
and both come back to port for resupply

Regardless of my north or south
or my looking here or there
the flakes assemble themselves
as if by a big magnet

Here, hair and scents
shove themselves towards others
Concrete curbs and foreign faces,
no trespassing signs and tree trunks
all become mirrors and allies
without any effort

Things plant themselves almost everywhen—now and now

Even now, inner reds of bones
and severe destinies all blunt
and bountiful
like shadows grow, as hail
forms and falls and fades

Like all the other beings in me
who stage their plays
on well-stretched sets
without a script

But that one in the dark cloak
hovers along the ridge
pointing his finger at me

If I run I’m doomed.

If I catch his kiss,
I join the ranks of resplendents
emerging like all the rest—
unwilled yet meant