October 10, 2018


nicholas b. jacobsen
Wild Rivers
September 21, 2018

*This is a poem inspired by roots, the theme of this year's Neo Rio.
(Included is a mental map of roots.)

what is root?
a noun and a verb
a division and connection
a path and a past
orgin and an end

the root word
the word root
also means branch
roots branching out as tree branches branch
into the air
gathering clouds, seeding rain, feeding roots
of rocks, rivers, flora, fauna,

my family roots are twisted
spread 'cross ocean and
blood lines pulsing in my veins
rooting my to others,
uprooted as we settled
divided as we spread

beet roots uprooted remind me of home
my step-dad always hated them
with him we were uprooted from the place i was born
i'm rooted, now, there
to the red rocks where we moved
and found family elsewhere
as i continue
home with me
in the iron in my blood, red
as the ground where i grew

i now live where route 66
and the rio grande
the road connects
east to west
the river divides
U.S. from them

rooting around in my mind
which is rooted in my nerves
ending in my soles
rooted in the soil
grounding me here
with you

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