Forest Poems by Mel Parks




Mel Parks has 20 years’ experience as a professional writer and editor, mainly in the area of early years and childcare. Alongside her writing, she develops and runs creative writing workshops in Sussex. She gained an MA in Creative Writing with distinction from the University of Brighton in 2019 and is continuing to research ecofeminism, mothering, mythology and writing for wellbeing. 
Twitter: @melhparks






















Forest – 1







and you never said don’t walk so i walk

until day breath


                                             & street becomes

mud & i feel my way across bark

rocks   fallen   trunks  crushing stalks stems

twigs cracking under  &  i  keep  on  walking

tears  mixing  rain    cold snaking naked

neck wind snicking goose bumping  skin

numb fingers feet  breaking  shoes  they’re 

born in  never noticed little toe before now

it’s blister sore & shit  what  was  that  branch 

stabs  chest thigh screams &  cloud  hides 

moon  owl  hooo & hands in pockets rubbing

thigh hood up i collide collapse curl in tree

roots hold me leaves scarfle branches creak

& I sleep




Forest – 2




she snurls curls into earth tucks arms legs

twists ball-like blending sending into earth

gives way derth slurrow perrishoon long

gone she’s falling tumbling inbetween roots

clutching onto tendrils treenoooto slippy slidy

slooop bump landing deep underground no

light warm dry air musty fresh can stand sit

breathe smell naked worm flesh mighty

millipede legs maroosh maroosh come close

burrow into skin like pins freeing energy

taloos from behind bone red blood cells

network transporters ants never stop

carrying leaf slithers slathers up down up

she watches waits





                         within earth walls








Forest | 3







 bathe in forest

                             shinrin- yoku* 

                                                    dip toes



in moss                             in bracken, heather, peat


skin aches


                                                      absorbs green

thighs, belly, fingers                    indistinguishable


                              for surface stillness

                                                      plimp drip is all


                                                      luscious greenity

                               skin wrinkles

hills valleys


sclosh, says moss, soosch carooo pasheee shan

saroo kaa kaa crish plash submish lang plot

raaa raaa deenaa bladnak soo nashee plashee

aradnen scarrood annoo shoona plagarr deen

anawar dreesh labush dagoosh naroosh oon**


as moss embraces skin dissolves troubles vanish

memories disappear feelings flatline all is green.


*shinrin-yoku is a Japanese word for forest bathing, with the idea that spending time in nature has a nurturing effect on wellbeing


**moss says: mine now stay with me dont leave

 never leave dont go never go youre safe here with

 me havent you got everything you need there there ill

 take care of you no need to worry about a thing eat

  this suck this drink this relax rest rejuvenate




Forest – 4*




soooosh blup      cowee crrrk kaooo yoooo

dush cleeeek       dulooo           palick gooosh

karool        maloo poosh     palloolikoosh

klup tranup           caloop    isssh sissssh pulish

spooot bloop suroosh      daloo nooo karush

sogonome duroogonee      plish click ooop

glurg karoo ayei                 ik ik ik ik ik ik

aaah aaaah aaaah             shhoosh kalet

clunk plunk krosher            blipp blipp blipp

eeeeeeeeeeg       pleeeg karrumph

kruck ploosh eeeeek aaarch snaarch kaarch

sooffeeet caruckplaruck plup plup


karoola      soosh blup    coweeaaah



Listen close   hear mecrouch down hear us all

I am forest     we are forest, I am one

we are many                I am full of breathing secrets

I am trees       animals                 every single organism

living deep and on the edge                   we are bluebells

bending in sunlight       woodpecker tapping bark

every deer nibbling watching     we are storm

falling branches           algae spreading pond

moss blanketing trunks

mushroom fungi stretching reaching growing

below ground enveloping roots connecting

one tree to another to another

                                                                     we are one

I am many        listen close         hear us now


Mel Parks