A poem like a shade of red

A half-time hermit’s simple discovery: spending time in the bush, away from connections—cyber and social—partially detached, (are you thinking unhinged?) allows one to be appeared to by colours undiscovered…

There are colours undiscovered,
like some tribes in New Guinea,
or the place where Andromeda goes by day.
Or like the chimeral creatures that live
on the crust of a lava flow at the ocean floor.

Like the colour that reaches my eye,
through the webby branches of spotted poplars
and sinks into the sunrise of my retina,
and erupts, molten, sparking nerves,
showering the clearing in these woods,
flowing down the wriggling green ash
where the squirrel runs on hot coals
And the red-eyed ravens drone overhead.

Let this shade be without the harness of name.
Why collar that which knows itself?
A Red so entire and differentiated
that it refuses every adjective—
lives without property or insistence
within the silent intelligence of Colour.

A ready friend to the unapproved,
a companion to the unnamed.
Here-say and heresy to the purchased,
but wide and awake where there’s a window,
open, and space for the unplanned.

Rising, wherever there’s a horizon.
Risen, wherever there’s a heart
hanging from a wild branch,
like a red leaf.


  1. I felt like I was reading a riddle. And then I came to the last stanza and I read about “Red…Risen wherever there’s a heart / hanging from a wild branch…” Ah, so very well said!

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