Lessons from the oak

Can we be steady and strong, yet also vulnerable?

Can we be rigid and rooted while still dreaming in fluidity?

Can we chase our deep longing for freedom despite our fixed responsibilities?

The Dance

There stands a pin oak 
straight and sturdy in our front yard, her trunk mottled by
nubs of amputated limbs, lobbed off for daring 
to venture too close to a neighbor’s roof;
here is where the bark grows stronger, each wrinkle 
a testament to her wisdom 
and survival
yet she 
is young by forest standards, 
a loner out here in the suburbs, growing 
recklessly tall, drunk off sun and sugar, and 
no family to rein her in. underground,
she navigates pipes and wires,
nudging concrete foundations, her roots search 
for the nodes of a companion 
who is not there
when a storm tumbles in from the west, she finds 
freedom in the wind. she dips and sways, enchanted 
by the music of the downdraft. it is a wild 
dance of imprisoned frenzy, a dance of longing 
felt by those who believe in a place 
untamed, somewhere beyond; in another lifetime
she is a dervish, alive and raging, fueled 
by anger and exaltation 
she bends and shimmies
one day her destiny 
will arrive as sure as that 
of any other tree in any other yard. she will 
outgrow her welcome and be dismembered 
branch by branch, mulched and pulped 
to line the flowerbeds at city hall; but today
she will dance.

©Vixen Lea 2020

The debut of my first video poem!

The Dance by Vixen Lea

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