Snow & Spruce Forest

Tarjei Vesaas

Talk about what home is —
snow and spruce forest 
is home.

From the very start 
it is ours. 
Before anyone has told us 
that it is snow and spruce forest, 
it has its place in us —
and then it is there 
the whole, whole time.

Waist-high drift 
around dark trees 
 — it’s here for us! 
Mixed into our own breath. 
The whole, whole time, 
though no one sees it, 
we have snow and spruce forest with us.

Yes, the hill under snow, 
and tree upon tree 
as far as you gaze —
wherever we are 
we find ourselves 
facing this.

And have in us a promise 
about coming home. 
Coming home, 
going out there, 
bending branches, 
 — and feeling so it flares in you 
what it is to be where you belong.

The whole, whole time, 
until it’s put out 
in our inland hearts.

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