Saturday, May 5, 2018

Sarah St Vincent Welch #368 The Cork Forest

The Cork Forest

you led me to the Cork Forest

I could hardly talk
or walk
like a tree I had not moved

movement was pain

now I ask,
had I grown 
like a forest
whispering underneath?

I have craggy rippled skin
microbes under my soles
arterial roots

I grew after all, I believe, 
though I couldn’t see
and was slow

think of cork boards, 
wine stops,
life jackets,
bobbing on a brim,


all the products
some no longer needed

do not harvest me

let my thick skin grow
the scars of industry
on my trunk

I spread
I speak, and stumble
along the path
circle round again

Summers’ last wander
a healing

(inspired during Tree Week)


  1. reminds me of Portugal...
    but where is yr cork forest, Sarah?

    1. Would love to go to Portugal. Sorry I replied below :) In comments. (check out some Portuguese cork forests)

  2. It is in the Arboretum, which was made to commemorate the 2013 fires which ravaged Canberra, took our pine plantations and I think 5 lives and 500 houses, you would remember. You must see it, it is amazing. The cork forest is one of the older forests, about a hundred years, Weston and the Burley Griffin's involved. Good for our harsh conditions, and was an attempt at establishing an industry. They are so beautiful, plants din a quincunx - word I have just discovered. Dylan took me there when I was emerging from illness, very intuitively. A healing place. So looking forward to seeing you!

    1. ah yes - we visited on our last Canberra visit
      the arboretum is great!

  3. oops 2002 or 2003 bushfire. Lost a decade there.


    The rare occasion the capital felt sympathy from the rest of the country :) Poor old bush capital. Victoria had a bad time too.

  5. I love this one, Sarah. Great that you are back here and I can read your poems!


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