Rebecca Foust

Seeds of the Giant Sequoia

come cone born, encased
in diamond-hard coats;
something secreted
encrypts them against
climate and time,
lets them wait out
the cold-ground
generations of winters
for that lightning-crack
thunderbolt trunk-split of fire
to fissure them to life.
Dull glitter of years
layering down.
But when the firestorm
comes, the ground melts
and boils like stew,
swells each seed
from germ to koan,
seeks meaning
from rain, memory
from pain, how it feels
to feel anything.

Rebecca Foust
“Seeds of the Giant Sequoia” first appeared in The Atlanta Review, Spring 2009,