I have taken some time off to be in Vermont. It is a place my husband and I have gone for the last thirty years. I need this time to relax, heal, and ease my pain. I am so grateful for this place. As soon as I see the Green Mountains in the distance, I breathe deeply and feel something release inside of me. This may be due to the wide expanse of greenery, the clouds sitting gently on the mountain tops, or the roadside laced with an assortment of wildflowers. There are acres and acres of distance between neighbors and people still put their wash up on clotheslines. This is a slow and peaceful place. My eyes tell my body that I am safe; I can rest now.
I have been reading about a Japanese practice called Shinrin-yoku, or Forest Bathing. The idea is the connect with nature by walking in the woods. By bringing all your senses to that place and being mindful, your body begins to heal itself and you feel restored. I am practicing forest bathing every day while in Vermont. My body is beginning to ache a little less and my mind is certainly in a better place. I so needed this respite, and I am grateful that there is such a beautiful place nestled in the mountains.
4 thoughts on “Forest Bathing”
Oh my. I love the verse, and I love the concept of forest bathing. What a tranquil way to relieve stress and get in touch with our innermost selves.
May I begin with a most befitting #sigh…
First and foremost, I am enamored with this framing – “Forest Bathing.” I loved the rationale you provided in the precursor, but the literary aesthetic of your lyrical poem is just mesmerizing.
Though it’s terribly difficult to limit myself, here are my three favorite lines and why:
“I dip my toes into the cool forest…”
How intriguing and delightful that you chose a word so often associated with liquid to depict the immersion of a soothing landscape of trees – breathtaking!
“Bees bustle from blossom to blossom…”
I am forever in love with alliterations, and this summoned the most wonderful imagery of eager bees moving quickly and intently from flower to flower…pleasured and passionate about their work!
“Up the dappled path…”
This is personal. I so rarely see this word – but I am reminded as both an educator and former young reader that the first time I saw this term was in a book. New and meaningful vocabulary was one of the many reasons that I found reading to be so enchanting and enthralling. This was a wonderful reminder.
What a powerful piece of work you’ve written! I’m so glad I “clicked here.” I won’t soon forget it. #forestbathing
May your trip be everything you imagined and more.
With Warmest Regards,
~Dr. Carla Michelle Brown