Shedding my shirt, my book, my coat, my life
Leaving them, empty husks and fallen leaves
Going in search of food and for a spring
Of sweet water.
I’ll find a tree as wide as ten fat men
Clear water rilling over its gray roots
Berries I’ll find, and crabapples and nuts,
And call it home.
I’ll tell the wind my name, and no one else.
True madness takes or leaves us in the wood halfway through all our lives.
My skin will be my face now.
I must be nuts.
Sense left with shoes and house, my guts are cramped.
I’ll stumble through the green back to my roots,
and leaves and thorns and buds, and shiver.
I’ll leave the way of words to walk the wood
I’ll be the forest’s man, and greet the sun,
And feel the silence blossom on my tongue like language.
*© Neil Gaiman