Eight Years Old
Eight Years Old and Evergreen
by Hayley Boyle
Reaching clear into the sky,
stretching limbs and fingers out—
as if to pull the sky closer—
our side-yard cedar
became like a second home for my
scabby knees and calloused hands.
My face freckled among its branches,
mirroring the bark,
dappled and flecked
with sun and beetles and specks of dirt.
Climbing into its canopy
filled my small body with joy.
An escape into a world
of marching ants
sparrows flitting from bough to bough
sap that would stick to my palms
for days following hours among needles and cones
lingering, reminding me that
does not exist
but miracles do.
They smell like an evergreen
and look like an eight-year-old,
swinging her legs, carefree,
reaching higher, touching the heavens.
Featured in our January 2022 issue, "Generosity"