Dark Hollow



The forest king’s son hides in plain sight, the colour of dry
spruce bark and fallen needles. How long must the spruce tree and frog
have lived side by side to match each other’s skins?
Down by the dry August riverbed, in the dark
hollow, tree stumps watch with implacable empty eyes. Boreal chickadees swoop
around me to land on dead branches like the notes of an insistent living


High on the hillside big old
maples and moss-trunked beech listen to the young trees shush and dapple light.
This part of the forest is quiet and brooding in high summer, shaded by leaves.
The ground is wound with roots, like the woven fingers of old people, waiting.



Here in the deep woods and at its edge with the sparse
grassed field, the summer ebbs.


The plants put forth their seed-down, ready to let
go, to release next years hope into the wind.


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Jake Powning

Jake is a professional swordsmith, artist, and writer who explores the strange place where traditional culture and the land meet.


  1. Your pictures are wonderful, nearly as much as your swords.
    I am a great fan of your work.
    You are a source of inspiration for my hobby
    thank you for bringing a little magic in our dull working days

  2. S. Nadudvariova

    I like how you compared seeds to next year’s hope. That is how I feel about my child, he is a little ball of light I am sending forward.

    Your photos and narratives are beautiful, thank you for sharing.

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