By Michele Bombardier
“Every wound (it’s) ever suffered remain within a tree” -Northern Woodlands
When I press my cheek against her hoary trunk,
I feel her breathe. Her cinnamon bark
surprises me every time with its softness.
Some say she doesn’t exist, can’t grow
in these maritime lowland woods but here she is,
and has a sister three miles away also doing well
but nevermind that. This is the one I go to,
place my chest and open my palms on her.
I’m held like a child. I know this to be true.
Maybe this is prayer. My desire to believe
in God is greater than my belief in God.
I imagine her sapwood, the pipeline
of new growth, how she drinks,
and her heartwood, her immutable core.
I wish I could undo my mistakes.
Wound wood, they call it, how a tree
grows around damage, folds it into itself,
becomes a pillar stronger than steel,
its cambium skin armor and pillow,
taking in all of our dirty air.