Tuesday, March 29, 2016

Ode to mountains

Photography:   Petros Koublis

we hike along your
slopes, rugged against forest's belly
in early sunrise-
though you reek of slim pickings
our teeth sinks into you
like meat,  we're wolves,
like seeds, we're birds,

we pause on top
your crown is gutted by wind 
& sluiced by countless thunder storms
you sometimes bellow with fire
every 100 years or so,
yet steadfast do we rest
on your shoulders, mud-carved
with carrying a million spruce
with burying a million more grave

we begin our descent
to hoots of geese & flight of swallows
passing by wheat & corn fields
by sundown-
our nostrils heavy with sap
& our arms, light of
& our feet, sated with 

Posted for D'verse Poets Pub - Summit in Sight, by guest prompter, Lynn.   Join us when the poetry pub opens at 3pm EST.


  1. I like your descriptions of the forest's "belly", "shoulders" of the mountain, and the wildlife that make their home there...then coming down to contrasting beauty of the plains in the wheat and cornfields.

  2. I love this piece...especially the hoots of geese!

  3. Full of life, and like Annell, I really like that last stanza.

  4. Quite the earthly shout with much life about

  5. Wonderfully expressed, Grace! You have shared the ascent and descent so very well.

  6. This is absolutely gorgeous writing :D especially love the opening lines. Powerfully written.

    Lots of love,

  7. You took me right there, with all the trees, and birds, and "arms, light of air".......

  8. These are my favorites, Grace:

    "we pause on top
    your crown // is gutted by wind"

    "by sundown-
    our nostrils heavy with sap"

  9. This is just brilliant, Grace. I love how you make it so alive with your choice of verbs. Too many wonderful images to make mention of each of them.

  10. A nearly perfect piece, for sure; I love the dangling single words at the end of some lines; may try that myself. I was an avid hiker, years ago; your poem made my pulse pound, my lungs smile, & my heart lighter; nice work. I like the lines /like meat, we're wolves/famished--& /like seeds, we're birds/lost/.

  11. I love your opening verse, Grace. It's so powerful in its wild description of experiencing the mountain and what she has to offer. I could see the wildlife and feel the lack of oxygen...wheeze!

  12. There are many things I admire about this poem, for example the way the reader is included in the hike, seeing and feeling everything, and the way you have foregrounded single words. I have also played around with structure, but to create a concrete image. I love the line ‘like seeds, we’re birds, lost’ and the final stanza, which is light and joyful.

  13. I really enjoyed this...I really liked... like seeds we're birds, lost. I think the enormity of mountains does allows us to lose ourselves and it's such a pleasurable place to be lost in.

  14. I have the sense of the masculinity of the mountain. It is a gutsy and satisfying climb.

  15. is gutted by wind
    & sluiced by countless thunder storms
    you sometimes bellow with fire
    every 100 years or so

    The mountains were just as subjected to their own woes (balded through glaciers or destroyed by volcanic activities) but mankind did not see this but cried out on the destruction caused by these!


  16. I love the idea of "forest's belly" and the portion after the way "famished and lost" stand apart...unique intriguing write, Grace.

  17. Lovely poem. My favorite lines: though you reek of slim pickings/our teeth sinks into you/like meat, we're wolves,/
    famished/like seeds, we're birds,/lost

  18. You have made the mountain come alive! Shoulders, belly. Slim pickings reminds me it's dinner time though. My belly is rumbling like an avalanche. Thanks :)

  19. This is beautiful and profound. I love trekking alongside you.

  20. Your poem is so alive, Grace. It makes me want to go hiking & visit the nearest mountain. :)

  21. I live in the prairies, so rarely get to see mountains, but have always enjoyed my hikes when I've been out west (I've been to Canada's eastern mountains only once)

  22. Descriptive and highly visual, Grace. I love the feel of this!

  23. I was having a hard time getting the comment box to work a minute ago, so I hope this works... I want to say that this an amazing poem with beautiful imagery. You've captured the almost spiritual stillness and centeredness that I feel after a mountain hike. - Annie Jadin, speakingvoiceless.wordpress.com


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