City Dweller – Poem by Ali Grimshaw

“You are comprised of 84 minerals, 23 Elements, and 8 gallons of water spread across 38 trillion cells. You have been built up from nothing by the spare parts of the Earth you have consumed, according to a set of instructions hidden in a double helix and small enough to be carried by a sperm. You are recycled butterflies, plants, rocks, streams, firewood, wolf fur, and shark teeth, broken down to their smallest parts and rebuilt into our planet’s most complex living thing.

You are not living on Earth. You are Earth.”

— Aubrey Marcus

My heart has felt the isolation of cold times
walls that didn't allow visitors to enter.

if I had grown up in the forest 
sung to by the wind in the trees
watched the birds flit, feed and gather in song

if I had slept by the rushing river
soothed by it magical movement
of freedom to flow over and between 

if I had foraged with the bears
following their lead to thread through
undergrowth to find my fill

would I have ever met loneliness?

Does separation exist for forest dwellers 
moss to mouse
tree to tribe
river to racoon
webbed connections none to separate?

© Ali Grimshaw 2022

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23 thoughts on “City Dweller – Poem by Ali Grimshaw

  1. Very thoughtful poem about the way we live – or living another way of life, Ali. Maybe we would be more connected with ourselves and each other if we lived a more simple life. Then again, the modern world has allowed so many of us to connect across lands in incredible ways. I agree with your comment earlier on designing cities connecting us to nature. Maybe we should have more green spaces in urban jungles. Or encourage each other to simply spend more time in nature every now and then. Hope you are doing well. Wishing you well this season and into the new year

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Mabel,
      Great to hear from you. As always I think the process of asking ourselves these essential questions is more important than any one answer. Keep questioning and exploring. It is one way I know I am really living. Wishing you peace and wellness.

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Bjorn,
      As more and more people live in urban settings I am curious about how we can design cities to provide ways for us to connect with nature. On a personal level I know how much I benefit from walking and running in our neighborhood greenspace.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. A sense of peace, contentment, deep thinking happens for me when I spend time in the forest … I believe Native Americans knew that … long before the rest of us caught on. A lovely write, Ms. Ali.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Grace, thank you for reflecting back your thoughts regarding my poem. We have so much to learn from nature and the indigenous people who knew how to live with nature instead against it.


    1. Jeff,
      What a fabulous question. If I had never known separateness how would I distinguish connection? This really makes me think about gratitude for all my experiences. Each one helps me to identify/appreciate the other. Thank you for this.

      Liked by 2 people

  3. I love your ability to use simple language to explain the more complex ideas behind what you were looking for. I hope you know how talented you are. You should keep writing these poems. Take care 🙂 Aiva xx

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Well, thank you so much, Avia. I don’t feel talented, just curious. I have always been in love with questions and love to think about them. I am glad you enjoy reading what I share.
      I hope to make use of your travel ideas. Hopefully 2023 will bring more opportunities.
      Take care.

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Yes, spending time in nature always feels healing and gives me a sense of connection to the world. This is why I think it’s important for all people to have access to natural settings. Thank you for sharing your thoughts.

      Liked by 1 person

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