Why Did I Flee?

“The world that used to nurse us

now keeps shouting insane instructions.

That’s why I ran to the woods.”

~ Jim Harrison from Songs of Unreason


You wonder why I fled?

Well, what was left?


I ran to the woods,

thinking I could be Thoreau

just go–

you know?

Escape the insanity,

the inanity of the world

where insults are hurled

at the weak

and those who can’t speak

for themselves

when life is bleak.

Then I dreamt I had a dream–

well, it seemed

to make sense at the time,

full of poetry and rhymes

I don’t remember,

but wish I could.

So, I decided to leave the woods.

I hiked a new trail out of there—

ignoring the signs that warned, “Beware!”

Why did I flee?

I suppose I just needed to see

what is and was and what could be.


Ivan Shiskin, “Forest,” [Public Domain] Wikipedia Commons








This is for Day 22 of Jilly’s 28 Days of Unreason, poetry based on the poetry and work of Jim Harrison.

27 thoughts on “Why Did I Flee?

      • Oh wow! If only you could remember! I’ve woken up once or twice and written it all down, but it wasn’t quite as compelling in the AM. LOL!

      • Yeah, I never seem to get it written down. In this dream within a dream, I could actually see read the verses on the paper. It was very weird. I’m hoping it just goes into a folder in my brain, and maybe I’ll open it again sometime. Haha.

  1. you evidently have a forest of poems in your dreams Merril – maybe you should go back to the woods – either way, I always enjoy your skipping meter

  2. This is truly pertinent! I am so glad you continue to weave current, nature and poetry together where I find solace and comfort in. Thank you for this, Merril.
    It truly included for me, many visions of freedom and the difficulty it is sometimes to get through to a safe harbor (on the other side)… escaping the insanity, indeed.

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