The Forest Knows
Stand still. The trees ahead and bushes beside you
Are not lost. Wherever you are is called Here,
And you must treat it as a powerful stranger,
Must ask permission to know it and be known.
The forest breathes. Listen. It answers,
I have made this place around you.
If you leave it, you may come back again, saying Here.
No two trees are the same to Raven.
No two branches are the same to Wren.
If what a tree or a bush does is lost on you,
You are surely lost. Stand still. The forest knows
Where you are. You must let it find you.
— David Wagoner, Lost
Walk out into the woods in silence, listening to the trees around you, and you’ll know the truth. Climb up high into the mountains, well above the trees, and hear the whisper in the wind. You’ll hear it up there too. Sail out beyond the sight of land, out where the swells make you feel small and inadequate. Hear the swish of water under the hull, the waves curl and splash away in salty celebration as you see your place in this world. The answers are out there, waiting for you to listen.
We surround ourselves with the buzz of distraction, the white noise of modern life, to avoid hearing the silent call that urges us to follow. It’s a tempting mistress, this Siren, and drives so many to the rocks of conformity. Fall in line! Do your job! Stay on point! Bide your time!
Time is irrelevant in the universe. Trees and mountains and the sea don’t mark time, they dance with infinity. Don’t you think, should we be so bold, that we should too?