next to the highway, leaves grow like hands opening,
their veins telling an ancient story.
next to the highway, bird calls sing age-old hymns,
a choir fluttering in the wind.
next to the highway, seeds scatter like constellations,
points on the map of time.
you can read history books in tree rings.
you can trace rivers back to their origins.
you can watch lizards flit between sticks,
instincts passed down through generations.
next to the highway, the soil is braided
with charcoal; the ferns browning & half
buried. streams choked with sprigs
of plastic, bird calls stifled by the thickening
air. above it all: a grey sky collapses
under its own toxic weight.
you can’t turn back time.
you can’t undo what has already been done.
but nature has learned its rhythms from the past.
perhaps we can learn from it too.