There are bones beneath the floor of the forest.
There are bones unburied, scraped clean by hungry teeth,
the predator and then the scavenger. There is blood shed,
soaked into the complex earth. Scat gets buried, but
the carcases of the dead lie in the underbrush. Flowers
push up through the fine bones of dead birds, pushing
aside the dry feathers. There are levels and layers of
death underneath all that life, the green leaf and
the sparkling stream, the white mushroom and
the red berry, death and dirt and decay. There is
no comfort in the silence of life reduced to rotting meat.
Bones make flutes, the god tells me. Sinews make
strings. Branches stretch strings into harp and lyre,
not just bow and arrow. Dead flesh becomes meat,
mushroom adds flavor. The forest remembers,
layers and levels of memory, the dead, the unborn,
the worlds that were and will be overlapping
one another. Come, sit here, says the Forest God.
Sit with me and sing of what is mourned.