EPIC Poetry Group Poet’s Corner: Winter Limbs, Call for Justice, Change Just Is

(Updated Feb. 28 with additional poem that was unintentionally omitted.)

Here’s the latest installment of Poet’s Corner, presented by the Edmonds-based EPIC Poetry Group.

Winter Limbs

Bordering road and farm
statuesque, boughs stretched upward
big leaf maple proudly
displays her bare bones

Draw near and see
her branches are not barren
but gracefully draped
with moss, lichen
home for insects
food for birds

Her roots blanketed
with last summer’s leaves
curly, brown, slowly absorbing into soil
returning nutrients to the tree
a cycle of life

Winter tree stands, exultant limbs
surging skyward as if in prayer

Do we dread our winter limbs?
Perhaps we too could reach heavenward in joy,
grateful for our life’s leaves
blanketing our roots
bringing potential for new growth

Marcia McLaughlin
written for Panorama poetry group; prompt is to write in style of another poet.  I chose Mary Oliver.

~ ~ ~ ~

Call for Justice

~ ~ ~ ~

Change Just Is

Prolific, idyllic summers
transition to crisp, blustery autumns,
then stormy, frigid winters,
to the green resurrection of spring,
and return to summer.

Consider the phases of the moon.
New, crescent, gibbous, full,
disseminating, balsamic, new.
A continuous revolution.

Perhaps subtle or dramatic
Perilous or beneficial
Irrevocable, transcendent
Incremental, miraculous
Baffling, profound
and always inevitable.

Change just is.

Our response is our choice.
Resist the unjust, the irrational.
Suspension of transformation
of self, others, or the world
is not possible.

Change just is.

Marcia McLaughlin

~ ~ ~ ~

Marcia McLaughlin is a retired spiritual director who enjoys photography and writing poetry – and seeing where the combination takes her. She is an ekphrastic poet, meaning poetry based on visual arts. She is particularly interested in the natural world, how we interact with it, and the messages it has for us. She has worked as a chaplain at Mary’s Place, an organization working with women and families who are homeless. Justice is an important part of her life and her writing. She lives in Lacey WA with her spouse, Beth Seacord, and their two cats.

  1. This regular MEN column always has such beautiful and thoughtful work. Poetry is what we need in these troubled times. Thank you Marcia for this Sunday’s contribution. I too love Mary Oliver’s work.

  2. I so appreciate the words “Winter tree stands, exultant limbs surging skyward as if in prayer”. All of our beautiful trees in the Pacific Northwest are guardians and sentinels. We are blessed to have them praying with us in all seasons! Thank you, Marcia!

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