Sisters by Kate Marshall Flaherty

shush like nurses

leaf-breeze shimmering,
undersides silver-green.

I feel your gnarled roots
fingering deep into earth,
as grounded as I wish to be.


.                Sisters, you who tickle
              heaven with slender tips,
.               who stand dirt-sure,
             may I bask in the cool
             shade of your wisdom?


You speak to me whispering
tree-secrets in the language
of lush and leafy greens,
exhaling inspiration—

Gifts of breath we give each other.


Copyright © Kate Marshall Flaherty. Originally published in Heartwood: Poems for the Love of Trees (League of Canadian Poets, 2018).


Kate Marshall Flaherty has five books of poetry, including Reaching V (Guernica Editions) and Radiant, launching 2019 with Inanna Publications. She has been published in numerous Canadian and International Journals and Anthologies, has been shortlisted for Descant’s Best Canadian Poem, the Pablo Neruda Poetry Prize, the Thomas Merton Poetry of the Sacred Prize, the Robert Frost Poetry Award and others. She is presently Writer in Residence at the Heliconian Arts and Letters Club, Poet in the Schools around Canada, and Toronto Rep. for the League of Canadian Poets. She has participated in National Random Acts of Poetry, and will inaugurate “The Poet Is In” with Marie Howe in Union Station February 2019. She guides StillPoint Writing Workshops in schools, youth shelters. universities and hospitals; poetry is her lifeline. See her performance poetry to music at

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