This Green and Pleasant Land



So many shades of green,
with brown and ochre in between,
and flowers sewing up the edges
with wild brambles and tidy hedges.

I often long for higher hills,
a mountain would be better still,
but this flat landscape stretches wide,
and touches an enormous sky
on a horizon laced by wind-sculpted trees
that dips to kiss the cold North Sea.

The crumbling coast is bothered by waves
erasing our existence day by day,
while we walk its beaches in sun and cloud,
wrapped in its ghostly sea-fret shroud.

Kim M. Russell, 17th August 2020

My response to earthweal weekly challenge: Re-Wilding Our Souls

This Monday, Sherry brings us words from Mary Reynolds Thompson’s poems, ‘Reclaiming the Wild Soul: How Earth’s Landscapes Restore Us to Wholeness’ and ‘In Praise of the Wild Soul’.

Sherry says her connection with the wild has sustained her through years of trauma, turbulence and loss. I agree that, for Mother Earth to heal, humanity must experience a societal shift, a transformation of consciousness, or be forced by escalating climate crises to learn how to live as part of our ecosystem, in an integrated, rather than a dominating way, and that healing the wound in nature heals the wound in ourselves.

Sherry acknowledges that different landscapes call to different people and, for our challenge asks us, what are our wild souls’ stories in relation to the landscapes we love? She wants us to write about the places that sing us home, the ones that call to our wild spirits, the places in all the world that invite our wild Selves out to play.

13 thoughts on “This Green and Pleasant Land

  1. What a beautiful poem and photo. I love the wind-sculpted trees. We have those here, along with the eroding shores. Love the idea of wild brambles, and being wrapped in its ghostly sea-fret shroud. It is foggy here today, so i will remember that description when i am walking at the shore.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. I did! And we had some lovely sunny days together. It rained all the way back and then over the weekend, and today we had thunder and heavy rain – but I don’t care because I got to see my daughter and grandson!

        Liked by 1 person

      2. He’s two and a half, starts nursery two mornings a week in September, and can already count to twenty and differentiate between a rectangle, a heptagon and a hexagon! But he can’t pronounce words beginning with ‘s’ and ‘sh’, which is cute when he says he wants to play ‘hide and eek’!

        Liked by 1 person

  2. A lovely bath in the wild, the metering and rhyme seamed perfectly to keep the temperature just so. I say ahhhhhh. It also makes peace with the wilderness that is. Good work Kim – Brendan

    Liked by 1 person

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