The scent of fresh wood
is among the last things you will forget
when the veil fails.
The scent of fresh white wood
in the spring sap time:
as thought life itself walked by you,
with dew in its hair.
That sweet and naked smell
kneeling woman-soft and blond
in the silence inside you,
using your bones for
a willow flute.
With the hard frost beneath your tongue
you look for fire to light a word,
and know, mild as southern wind in the mind,
there is still one thing in the world
you can trust.

—Hans Børlig (Norwegian Wood, Maclehose 2015)

Comments |2|

  • Those are some tidy stacks of wood!

    Funny, the poem reminds me of how when people think of ice cream treats that are served with a little wooden spoon, it’s not the flavor of the sweet treat that lingers in the memory, it’s the tang and texture of the wood.

    • Julie, since I read your comment about popsicle sticks, prior to manning a woodsplitter in the U.P. with a dear friend, as I smell the wood, all I can taste is that popsicle stick.

      Our stacks of split wood are not as aesthetically profound, but they still brighten the eye, and provide a real sense of satisfaction because it’s the fruit of our labor. Thanks for stopping by.

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