A redwood tree shades the slender daughter shooting up from her side: an apt metaphor, I think, or at least one that calms my heart. In a few weeks, my youngest child will leave home for college. I both hate and welcome this change. Every few days, a sudden nostalgia pulls at me when I am least prepared. The faint tunes of a familiar merry-go-round make my eyes tear up. My throat tightens when I pass the pumpkin patch lot, now empty. The playground nearby is newly remodeled, but I still hear the thrill in my young one’s voice calling out, “Look at me, mom! I’m flying!”

Leaning against the redwood’s scruffy bark, I blink away tears. The tall, quiet tree and the younger redwood growing from her side enlighten me. I cannot cling to the past, to the small warm fingers that reached for mine or the upturned face that beheld me as all-capable. The redwood trees, mother and daughter, anchor me for my task at hand: to applaud the young woman who I have nurtured from her tiniest beginning within me. I weep and I praise her both, for now I know. Entwined at the roots, we each reach for sky and light. We become, each in keeping with her dream. But the rootedness remains. For that I can be glad.

Lana Dalberg 6/24/2014.


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2 thoughts on “POEM FROM AN EMPTY NEST

  1. Dear Friend ~ Allow me to re-introduce you to the inner secrets of Simplichiquin/Ahwastes (San Bruno Mtn.). I tried to send you an announcement for passed Sunday’s “Fire Fest”; it was “undeliverable” for some reason, and, it was too soon for you.

    Time spent on the Mtn, as you well know, and write about, is always spent in the balance of giving (tending, pulling invasive species) and taking (the vistas, fresh air, smells of natives in bloom).

    When a void of giving love occurs, the Mtn. would love more love. We recently won on your side of the Mtn. = we, finally, got Daly City to donate it’s land to Mtn. Watch, thus preventing the private school up above you from creating a “parking lot.” This is an ancient site, where natives camped when going out to sea. 5 “endangered” species reside there.

    The community of Mtn. Watch is a very healing, healthy, educational, politically active, spiritual, group of good folks. Please join us, at your will.

    Beautiful, ageless, poem.

    May Peace, Love and Justice abide with you and yours, always. Kristen Hansen

    Date: Fri, 27 Jun 2014 02:37:20 +0000 To: krishansenlaw@msn.com

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