We can grow by simply listening,
the way the tree on
that ridge listens its branches
to the sky,
the way blood listens its flow to the site of a wound,
the way you listen like a basin when my head so full of grief can’t look you in the eye.
We can listen our way out of anger, if we let the heart
soften the wolf we keep inside.
We can last by listening deeply, the way roots reach for
the next inch of earth, the way an old turtle listens all he hears into the pattern of his shell.
This poem is published in the book, Reduced to Joy by Mark Nepo (2013).