Some stories last many centuries,
others only a moment.
All alter over that lifetime like beach-glass,
grow distant and more beautiful with salt.
Yet even today, to look at a tree
and ask the story Who are you? is to be transformed.
There is a stage in us where each being, each thing, is a mirror.
Then the bees of self pour from the hive-door,
ravenous to enter the sweetness of flowering nettles and thistle.
Next comes the ringing a stone or violin or empty bucket
gives off -
the immeasurable's continuous singing,
before it goes back into story and feeling.
In Borneo, there are palm trees that walk on their high roots.
Slowly, with effort, they lift one leg then another.
I would like to join that stilted transmigration,
to feel my own skin vertical as theirs:
an ant-road, a highway for beetles.
I would like not minding, whatever travels my heart.
To follow it all the way into leaf-form, bark-furl, root-touch,
and then keep walking, unimaginably further.
Jane Hirshfield's Other Poems
Read this poem in other languages
This poem has not been translated into any other language yet.
Comments about this poem (Metempsychosis by Jane Hirshfield )
- How Are You Hittin' It?, Joe Hughes visit joehughes.o ..
- The Forsaken Tradition, ALEX OGOH
- The different images in life, MOHAMMAD SKATI
- India To Vow, Asit Kumar Sanyal
- A Touch of Fall, Rhonda Trull
- YEN, Gina Borrebach
- Geleefd, geliefd, verzonken, Madrason writer
- That coming Fall, MOHAMMAD SKATI
- Set of Compromises, Col Muhamad Khalid Khan
- A Fundamental Fruit Of The Soul, Romella Kitchens
Poem of the Day
- 04 Tongues Made Of Glass, Shaun Shane
- Still I Rise, Maya Angelou
- The Road Not Taken, Robert Frost
- Invictus, William Ernest Henley
- Fire and Ice, Robert Frost
- Phenomenal Woman, Maya Angelou
- Daffodils, William Wordsworth
- Alone, Maya Angelou
- I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings, Maya Angelou
- Dreams, Langston Hughes
(March 26, 1874 – January 29, 1963)
(4 April 1928 - 28 May 2014)
(1 February 1902 – 22 May 1967)
(10 December 1830 – 15 May 1886)
- Heather Burns
Edgar Allan Poe
(19 January 1809 - 7 October 1849)
(12 July 1904 – 23 September 1973)
- Lilly Emery