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Eavesdropping on the Redwoods


I heard a gaggle of tough young redwoods

trying to get the ancients’ attention

but the elder trees were not interested in prattle,

the youngins played in the quick-step breeze

limbs raised cowboy-on-a-bronc style

flexing boughs wildly, whipping in the wind.


The whipper snappers did not give up,

swinging branches

conducting rhythm for afternoon westerlies,

taunting the delicate saplings

to be pushy, to tickle the big guys

with itchy sprouts through every crack, crevice.


I hesitated standing on the soft cushion

of their wooded home,

the Redwoods didn’t bother with me

didn’t care if I understand their symphony,

swaying with their green fingers

in keys and timbre foreign to my ears,


They seemed quite happy to not notice me at all.



© Sharon Lope Mooney, “Eavesdropping on the Redwoods”, originally published in Euphony Journal, UChicago’s Literary Magazine, ed. Julia Dillman, Chicago, IL, Winter 2023

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