Kootenay Literary Competition

Seed-Saving Our Family Tree

By Marte Stuart

It always starts with two
Two who begin the thing
Who are the trunk of the tree
The trunk of this tree

History repeats, retreats
        Past
down the trunk rooted firmly
to feed from the first mother,
swallowing the whole of the world,
        Those grand-folk stories at twilight
back every tangled direction,
set by generations before,
        Now dirt
a family network trailed back
        Homemade
to an old-world order,
building blocks laid
13 billion years, before life,
        At the beginning of time
in a resting period
when all was pure potential,
a pairing of form not yet made.
A limbo of all-alluring beauty,
        Ah! The wait —
        Attraction beguiling
before the singularity moved
for no reason but that it could
        And why not?
– a leap into nothing
holding all the possibility of a universe,
a charging thrust,
        Creation!
the first instant, a separation.

It always starts with two         
Two who begin the thing
Who are the trunk of the tree
The trunk of this tree         

Occasion reaches forward, recreating
        Future
up, branching recklessly,
blowing in the arms of the first father,
spit forth into the whole of the world,
Raucous grandkids at        
dawn’s light        
forward every opportune direction,
stemming from generations before,
Now blossoming        
a family network expanding out
Homespun        
through birthed family order,
forming blossoms
at the tips of branches,
Until the end of time        
a flowering period
when beauty abounds,
a coupling not yet made.
A limbo of all-alluring potential,
Ah! The wait —        
Attraction beguiling
where bees will buzz
for no reason but to prosper,
And why not?        
– the leap into a pollen-rich feast
holding all the possibility of fruit,
a deep dive,
Creation!
another coming together.


 

 

        It always starts with two
        Two who begin the thing
        Who are the trunk of the tree
        The trunk of this tree

But what if the tree should be cut?
Today?
What then?
So then just go ahead —
Plant the seed
The one you’ve been saving
In your pocket
Since you last walked
The Old Growth Trail
Under the cedar

And gazed in awe at its girth,
the tangled sprawl down below the dirt
homing to a birthplace at the core,
the perfect straightness drawn up, beyond the sky
hooked to a point in the heavens
around which all-else spins.

         That old cedar.
No other will do
Inception!
Its seed-germ the recall
of all that came before, and
of trees yet to be.
Take it
Plant it
So it goes
On and on
All my relations.

It always starts with two
Two who begin the thing
Who are the trunk of the tree
The trunk of history

About the Author

Adult Poetry Submissions – First Place