Apple tree

Poem © Adam Robersmith, 2000; Photo © 2002 Greer Scott


When planting, the ground should be neither frozen, nor too wet. As for love,

it is much the same; the heart will not flourish where it cannot set root or where it drowns, smothered by mud and unable to breathe. There must be freedom and space, an openness into which love can spill and seep, flow and settle, solidifying into an anchor that will not let go, no matter the storm.

Planted at just the right moment, the heart will reach out to the earth and to the sky, bridging the chasm with a subtle exchange of breath, of life, connected by the love of one for another begun in the perfect time. Nourished by the soils and the winds, the heart will bear its sweet apples, blushing red, crisp, ripe with substance and juice.

Too often, we plant in the wrong season; we drop the seeds in the wet, desperate moments of autumn, afraid that we will be without fruit in the future, or we lay the seedlings in spring, when only the topsoil is ready and the deeper strata remain frozen, undiscovered by warmth, unable to give way to the gentle root.


When planting, the ground should be
neither frozen, nor too wet, as for love.

I have been writing fiction, non-fiction, and poetry for publication since 1995, with local, regional, national, and web credits to my name. My fiction and poetry can be found online at Commit2Respond Day 16: Generate Abundance and Hope, The Harrow (2006 Fiction Archive, "Love You" by Adam Robersmith), and in the archives at Tales from a Small Planet (Poetry Archives-April 2001, "Three Poems from Ireland" by A.R. Smith). Last summer, Grounding Through Heaven and Earth: an Introduction to the Nine Hazels was published in Trilithon, the annual journal of the AODA. I have a chapter on avoiding despair in climate justice work in an upcoming anthology by Skinner House Books and am currently working on articles about the process of spiritual formation, Grove (a chapbook of twenty poems including "Quert/Apple"), and final revisions on both my first novel and my doctoral thesis.

My most consistent writing these days is for preaching in my congregation and academic papers for my doctoral program. In the past, I have been the writer and editor for the Ithaca Urban Renewal Agency and have also designed and edited a chapbook of poetry and prose entitled Thaw and Flood for the Cayuga Nature Center in honor of the Center's 25th anniversary.  Once, a long time ago, I was also the staffwriter for TRACKS, the newsletter of the Rosamond Gifford Zoo at Burnet Park, and a regular contributor to the Finger Lakes Wine Gazette.