A Spell to Ground

by Paige Gilchrist

                                    Find the coil of an old tree root.

Follow it down.        Stir the soup thick.        Sit.

    Sit with your feet bare to tamp dirt.

              To listen.        Gather drumbeat.        Store it as echo

in your bones.    Smell the musk of hard

     mast     —    acorn   hickory    beech.         Paw a hoof print

                                          with your palm.

       Twine the stems of your fingers around an earthen cup

            the color of rust blood.          Let branch tea

      steep                                    smoke-dark steam spiraling

                      down beneath cast iron.       Embers.

Remember the toll of your heartbeat

                  deep.                           Embed it in heavy bedrock



After leaving the corporate publishing world a decade ago, Paige Gilchrist did what any self-respecting Ashevillian would do: she promptly earned her yoga-teaching certification. She finds surprising similarities between making shapes with bodies and with words and is grateful for the opportunity to play with poetry within the talented and supportive GSWP community.