I see them straining inland,
Stretching away from the winds
That blow from Lake Michigan’s waters
Roots pushing at the earth
Trying to escape?
Bark that’s gnarly and dark
Yet, at one time,
Young, white cedar saplings
Reached for the sky
Skin still tender, pale and weeping
The winds of life can do that, too
Blowing and howling against our young legs
Weather the storms
But no matter how we lean and sway
We can’t avoid the winds
That push our unsteady lives away.
Geri Ryan-Harden is a Speech and Language Pathologist who shares her love of words with fellow members of the Sweetgrass Writer’s Group. She believes that words are the open windows that our innermost thoughts and feelings can fly through. She lives in a lovely town in Michigan, continually looking for the elusive heron to photograph.