Walking in Hartwell Forest

Editor’s Note:  Happy New Year!  As Transpositions continues its Winter Break and celebrates the hope for the new year to come, we thought you might enjoy this poem considering rebirth in the midst of a winter walk.


When I’m in my hometown of Bedford, Massachusetts, I often walk in the woods near my childhood home. These words were born out of one of those walks.

Walking in Hartwell Forest

I want to know what sustains a life
beyond the perennial checks
whose cheap lead fades
from the page as quickly
as the life they mark
leaving nothing but
a blind existence
like a fallen tree
half-buried under its second skin
of old leaves and lush moss
leeching life off its lifeless grain.

I want to be solid as a solemn oak
unswayed by the ways of winter
with roots that run deep in rebirth.




  • Heather Kaufmann is a New England native currently pursuing an M.A. in theology and the arts at Regent College in Vancouver, British Columbia. For her final integrative project at Regent, she is writing a series of poems in response to the Gospel of Luke, and is studying the relationship of postmodern theopoetics and Hans Urs von Balthasar’s theological aesthetics. She holds a B.A. in Cultural Anthropology and, when she’s not studying, works as a nonprofit grant writer and fundraising consultant.

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