Under Holy Trees – a poem by Barbara Daniels

Under Holy Trees

Where two paths cross, I bury
red beads and an old brown shoe.
The beads advise prayer,

but the shoe says keep walking.
At Big Timber Creek I drop
a coin to flaring water.

Here’s a sad-looking possum
showing its teeth, dragging its tail.
Jays call. My heart beats on

earnestly. Some trees are holy:
hackberry, sassafras, elm.
Beneath their branches—

a chance of blessings. I take
twigs as amulets. I don’t
believe in them. Not really.

Nor do I know where the wild
geese go when they fly
so steadfastly toward the sun.


Barbara Daniels’ book Rose Fever was published by WordTech Press and chapbooks Black Sails, Quinn & Marie, and Moon Kitchen by Casa de Cinco Hermanas Press. Her poetry has appeared in Prairie Schooner, Mid-American Review, and elsewhere. She received three fellowships from the New Jersey State Council on the Arts.

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