Carol Berg


Why not grow here in this nettle tree
nestled in this wintry air, dusted with snow.

I appear strange to you, aglow in orange. Although
the world breathes out its gray breath. Why not see

the tree holding me as carefully as its leaf
in Spring, the first tender thrust, a tongue tasting

a slightly softer dawn. A belief in the sun’s reach.
Between my stem and tree branch, a singing

of a similar sap, the tree sending out our secret scent,
a mixture of ripe sunshine and long days,

a memory of a bee’s sniff and search, the lent
pollen. I will myself still here, keeping that drop at bay,

until picked with eager hands, the greedy ground or yours.
Either way, I patiently await the mouth’s core.


Carol Berg’s poems are forthcoming or in Crab Creek Review (Poetry Finalist 2017), DMQ Review, Hospital Drive, Sou’wester, The Journal, Spillway, Redactions, Radar Poetry, Verse Wisconsin. She was winner of a scholarship to Poets on the Coast and a recipient of a Finalist’s Grant from the Massachusetts Cultural Council.