Birch Grove

There’s a birch grove on the banks of a stream.


In the Cascadia valley. They are a little crooked. With shallow roots, soft wood, susceptible to blade and fire.

On the western side, a yellow immigrant mold blooms near the blackened cankers sunken in the fleshy bark.

It may seem foreign, but really, it grows from within.

From the rotting and the death microorganisms do what they do best, they eat away at decay.

Fuzzy evergreen moss patches cling to their eastern branches. Beads of sap cover over the black death. Though, it’s too late.

It’s called an invasion, could even be said to be terrorism. Domestic terrorism.

A gentle breeze rustles the pale trident leaves.

Every birch trunk along the bank has the same patchy yellow fungus growing.

The microorganisms are carried along by a bark beetle, subtly, like the effects of an idea on the mind. They deployed in this area some time ago. Now they have roots.

This grove is not the first, and won’t be the last. The fungus has invaded the seeds. The spores might say its their homeland and this their birth right. Nationalist fungus.

2 responses to “Birch Grove”

  1. This was awesome.

    I have this thing about pulling weeds. It always makes my stomach turn a little bit that we’ve decided what is a weed, a thing to throw away and get rid of, and what’s a plant we need to keep and tend to.
    The cycle of life isn’t allowed.
    But I suppose it’s a metaphor in a way, for us, the benevolent part of humanity who helps the less fortunate thrive in a place they are struggling. Warring our little selves all over the place

    1. I always laugh at myself in the summertime when all the weeds are flowering on the side of the road and I’m stopping to admire them. I agree it’s in the eye of the beholder in many ways.

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