What has been imprisoned under the lawn all winter?
Frozen mud, rendered malleable
by spring warmth, releases
rusty skeletons of ginger bud cases,
last spring’s copper fairy lights.
Stones and flint jingle underfoot,
sigh a heavy scent from crumbly lumps
of black earth, exuding worms from clumps,
evicting glossy beetles from ivy
tangled in the willow, bowed
by months of wind and rain,
happy to feel its roots again.
Kim M. Russell, 2017
My response to dVerse Poets Pub Poetics – Soil (posted early due to having to go off-line for a few days)
Björn is our host today and he wants us to write poetry about soil, where we come from and what we’ll become: “Ashes to ashes and dust to dust”. He says that he loves and hates the scent of mulch; loves growth and fears decay; loves to walk barefoot in warm dirt, but afterwards he washes his feet. Soil gives grain for bread, but when the weather fails we die of hunger: it’s friend and foe.
There are many synonyms for soil: mulch and compost, dirt and grime, earth and ground: all reflect the soil and various values we attribute to its worth. Soil can be a metaphor for land and country, home and nations, war and peace, and for the roots of trees.
Björn asks us to taste the soil or bite the dust and bring him poetry from what we sense in soil; to be gravediggers, gardeners or the soil of our origins.