Wintry Lane


It is often I scamper to the woods to wash my thoughts of day. Beneath the forest crown, upon the threshing floor, and within the arms of watchful limbs I plunge sure-footed down wooded lane. Breathe in the mollify melody of birds among the trees. Feel the ease of earth between my toes. Inhale the woodsy scents of bud and rot. All enhance my taste of what lies beyond each winding bend.

It need not be swells of spring where sticky cobweb clings to hair. Nor sultry summer day as broad leaves waltz in wind. I anticipate the warmth of autumn’s glow, its blush bittersweet hues. Winter is when true forest cleansing scrubs from head to toe. Like icing on a cake, the trees are dressed in white. I sense a deeper purging… a pouring out of now and then.

cling to crusty bark
woes settled on thin shoulders
Refreshing forest

I had no idea all these years I’ve been ‘forest bathing’. Stop over at dVerse to see what it’s all about. “Purge me with hyssop, and I shall be clean; wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow.” Psalm 51:7.


  1. Chris Karas says:

    Love the prose very much.


  2. Denis says:

    Nice job Dearest, glad to see you penning some poetry again. (Had to look up a word I hadn’t seen before in this one!)


  3. Misky says:

    That haiku is a beautiful contrast to your prose.


  4. Sherry Marr says:

    A beautiful description of the winter woods.


  5. I can understand you.. winter can be both the best and worst time to be in the woods.


  6. Your haiku is a perfect fit with this lovely poem.


  7. Glenn Buttkus says:

    I have never enjoyed the chill & dampness that comes with deep snow to walk in. Winter is my least favorite season, I am fortunate to live in the lowlands near Puget Sound, so winter glides over us most of the time. Your piece reminds me to try & appreciate ice & misery.


  8. So much to savor in this, Patricia. I love how you brought out the aspects of spiritual cleansing and then tied it in to Ps. 51. Woes settled on thin shoulders: yea!


  9. I love the thought of washing away the day, and you’ve given me a new appreciation of the winter forest, although I do appreciate it when it’s frosted with a sparkling new snow. Thank you for your lovely words!


  10. Grace says:

    I love the idea of winter purging and scrubbing the forests – indeed refreshing ~


  11. kim881 says:

    The woods are great places to wash away thoughts and cleanse the soul. I love the way you have incorporated the senses – I can smell ‘the woodsy scents of bud and rot’ and feel the ‘sticky cobweb;.


  12. frankhubeny says:

    Interesting idea that the best forest bathing comes in winter when the forest itself is cleaned and refreshed for spring. I would have thought it to be any season but winter, but I think you’re right.


  13. A beautiful haibun Patricia and yes, the forest in winter feels even more purifying! I love how you ‘scamper to the woods to wash my thoughts of day’ :o)


  14. kanzensakura says:

    And add some snow to the mix….I so like this haibun and the scripture you chose to go with. I love my woods year round as well. And cold clean snow is perfection.


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