Daffodil stems mingle with tendrils of baby-fine hair,
A crown above her fresh face.
Eyes gaze at the world, anew.
She makes her verdant bed among lush loam,
The dew-spotted grass tickling her wiggly toes.
The maiden stands, wobbles, and takes her first step.
She falls, laughs–
The sweetness of hyacinth breath lingers.
Then she sings with robins,
A symphony of bird melody in the early hours.
She finds her voice, her way, and forges onward.
Her limbs lengthen with the daylight,
And she dons a green robe
Lined with wildflowers.
Her perfume is summer blooms,
And her song is crickets at night
And cicadas during the day.
Her skin warms and darkens
As she comes into maturity.
The mother cradles her middle’s slight bump
And walks with strength
Through dense forests and fields,
Life at its fullest everywhere.
As she winds deeper into the trees,
The rustling leaves begin to change–
Slowly at first, a hint of red or gold on the tips,
Just as the mother’s body ages.
Her robe trails orange, crimson, and yellow,
Mirroring the tree’s wardrobe.
Together, the forest and she shed their summer coats
And pull on new ones of brown.
Although the earth seems barren around her,
Hidden life grows within and without,
Unseen by the eye, but expected with hope,
With time, which she spins as the days die a little
And a chill creeps into the air.
Soon, she wraps herself in a blanket of white,
Which conceals much of her aging body.
Her form molds with the skeletal trees,
Which, when decked in that glimmering purity,
Brings a somber stillness, a quietness, a peace,
That life is only slumbering.
The darkness wins for a while,
Yet at night, the crone sometimes lies
Under a star-studded velvet-black sky
And beholds the eternity of the life cycle
Of everything, from the smallest creature
To the most giant of stars.
She closes her eyes and becomes one
With the earth, surrending her body
As new life is birthed.
The maiden blinks open new eyes
And sees afresh the first bud.
Then she tunes in her ears
And hears the first birdsong.