This week’s poem, Mary Tracy’s “Minutes on the Warming Earth,” brings us into the dynamism of the natural world, in all its urges, processes and changes. I love this poem’s rich imagery of wind, seed and root, and its final lines of wisdom about how to live in our ever-shifting world.

Tracy lives and writes in Portland and is inspired by writers who find depth, irony and pleasure in ordinary things. She has two cats who race to every opening closet door hoping for some new discovery, a trait they share with writers. She is a former educator whose work has been published in “Balancing Act 2” (Littoral Books), “Poems From Here,” Frost Meadow Review and Reflections.

Minutes on the Warming Earth
By Mary Tracy

Under the ever-moving sky
bullrushes creep north, rippling in the wind.

Purple loosestrife floods ditches and swales.
Bittersweet’s bright hunger strangles.

Yet seasons still tell birch to split its skin,
prompt maple to drop its million seeds,

provoke starlings to squabble nonstop.
The moon still moves through the night.

Become lake and lily, loon and fish,
be forest floor, sediment, leaf mold, rot.

Trust the hours you lose your center.
Love the minutes you do not.

Megan Grumbling is a poet and writer who lives in Portland. Deep Water: Maine Poems is produced in collaboration with the Maine Writers & Publishers Alliance. “Minutes on the Warming Earth,” © 2021 by Mary Tracy, appears in by permission of the author.

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