Shadows need trees to grow.
They draw blueness from the sky
and with it drench the snow.
To nurture them the sun bends low.

My tongue worries a fresh line
as a goat nibbles on haw.
I am secure in this hinterland
but on the street they would judge me
a homeless man who’d lost his wife.

Snowshoeing in the dormant forest,
the slanting light lending
each hummock its special shape,
I manage this once not to tabulate
what trees to fell next autumn.

Mere words cannot hold the sun’s power.
Campfires blaze, furnaces incinerate,
but here on the trail I marvel
at a brightness that preserves the cold.

Douglas Smith, formerly a teacher of Anthropology at York University, is a homeopathic physician.and author of several books on alternative medicine. It is claimed (although Dissident Voice has no proof of this!) that Doug and his partner grow the best garlic in Haliburton County. Read other articles by Douglas.