Mycorrhizal Network by Amanda Yskamp

We bought one of those wood signs, with the edges
rustic and singed, naming our property something
folksy and fun, “Cabin a real good time,” while within
the loamy needled ground, under the “nature trail,”
(oxymorons R us), a mycorrhizal network connects
this tree and this, in ways that would topple
a metaphor in sheer wonder, with kin recognition
and cross-talk, interspecies communication
strengthening resiliency. Look around and count
species, you who collect, number mourning doves
and lichen, pine marten, marbled murrelet,
all dependent on structures intricate and adaptive.
Were there introduced microbe or toxin,
a warning would release volatile hormones,
communally, I mean, an understanding, just that,
standing under all the upper regions of growth
and harbor, of screech and song. They change
leaf shape and angle towards or away, together,
I’d say as one, but what does that mean,
coming from one sitting beneath the canopy,
above a fungal lace of collaboration and common sense?

Amanda Yskamp’s work has been published in such magazines as 
Threepenny Review, Hayden’s Ferry Review, The Georgia Review, Boxcar 
, Rattapallax, and Caketrain.   She lives on the 10-year flood 
plain of the Russian River, from which she serves as the librarian at a 
local school and teaches writing from her online classroom.

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