By: Cristina DeSouza
I dig holes in the soil with bare hands,
repeating myself in abrupt movements,
in search for the depths of earth.
I pull out roots, certainties and dreams,
loose pillars of my life
that comes apart like red sand.
While clearing my muddy aura,
my new self is born fresh from the pits of dirt.
Sense and sentiment destroyed by my
unquiet fingers, become now silent seeds
for my unborn body made of green stem and sap.
I sprout from the soil and grow slowly and tender,
branching from my stem now made trunk as solid as oak.
As I carve the ground, wind blows through my leaves,
singing the song of palm trees by the ocean.
Stretching taller, I feed myself
with sunrays and starlight
and spring gives way to summer.
Summer fades away into fall, all red
and then brown. Soon enough, winter comes
and touches me with its icy flakes. I hibernate.
For months I remain quiet and speechless.
I am now a hermit, whereas earth is all frozen and white.
Still, I stay until new spring comes and thawing begins.
New green is born and hummingbirds and butterflies
kiss my flowers in a cycle that renews itself,
slowly but unmistakenly.
Cristina DeSouza is a poet and physician living in Arizona where she writes and practices medicine. She has had several poems published by magazines in the US and in Brazil. In the US: Rue Escribe, AROHO, Poetry Pacific, The Same, Sheila-Na-Gig to cite a few. She had a chapbook of poems published in 2019 by Main Street Rag, entitled "The Grammar of Senses." She holds an MFA in Creative Writing from Vermont College of Fine Arts. Her email address for communication is firstname.lastname@example.org.
Behind the Scenes:
"The background of 'Cycle' is my constant preoccupation with transformation, metaphorically speaking and in life. All beings in the planet sustain transformation one way or another, sooner or later. Like trees and vegetation in general, we are pruned by life, frozen by the wind and snow just to be born again with every spring. Many times, transformation can be painful as "pruning" is needed for all of us to renew and be born again, stronger, greener and more beautiful. So this poem talks about transformation. My own transformation, and when I see things with nature's eyes, transformation becomes part of myself, inevitable, many times initially unwelcomed, only for me to acknowledge later on that I would not have survived without it, that after it I am more wholesomely myself. Looking at transformation thinking of nature, gives me peace to understand and go through all the changes that life has made me go through, and I feel better and stronger after them."