This poem is taken from Stand 223, 17(3) September - November 2019.

Rachel Boast Poem
Seven Protections

Protection by Beech trees, their roots  
watered with wine, their leaves
a glossary of rhyming words.

Protection by Birch, the white lady
of the woods, her sky-ladder    
intensified by winter dreams.

Protection by Quicken Tree, the red one,
holding its oracular branches
to draw myself up and over the wall.

Touch wood. Pick up sticks            
for locating metal, water, boundaries,
this path that takes me up again.

Protection by the broad Oak, who speaks
slowly, rustling his messages                
as the sun opens a door into the hillside.
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