Originally published Thursday, 13 June 2019.

The tree root is gnarled,
twisted, bending and
contorting until it finds
water, the source of life
in the ground.
It will not stop until
it finds it.
Without thinking it continues
to hunt for sustenance,
the hope it will get in return
for effort, not of the mind
but the heart, its DNA.
Underground, the search is
relentless, the pushing,
breaking through hard places
so even the roots
forget how they are made.
That effort to change,
adapt, improve, grow,
is necessary to
survival, but it does not
guarantee the tree will

Clouded dawn breaks through,
light radiating branches
stretching toward sun.
I reach and grasp and take
hold of little, muscles
worn from overuse.
turn my face to light,
knowing it can’t help but
—as love does.
And I put aside my pen,
surrender my mind’s efforts
to figure out how to be
better, kinder, purer,
and accept that the sun will
shine and the water will satisfy.
I will eat my fill and let
my heart receive, receive
or I am nothing,
have nothing, bear nothing
in hard ground
beneath the sun
shining, shining on

—jennifer j. camp

shine poem






































































































































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