The Strength of the Earth

By Lizzie Arroyo, TIWP Student

When I feel the urge to run away, or curl into a ball in a hole somewhere, I put my hand flat against the nearest piece of wood I can find. A desk, or a church pew. I press my palm and my five fingers against it as hard as I can, and I focus on how the wood doesn’t give way. How it stays cool and smooth and sturdy. And I think about how this plank of wood was once a tree, which stood tall and proud for years, through storms and droughts. And how that tree’s root ran deep into the soil, drawing its strength from the wide old earth itself. And I imagine the strength is like a river, flowing from earth, to tree, to desk or pew. I pull that strength into me, through my skin, and stand my ground.

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