Toby Gibson


The Whisper of the mountain
The hushed tone of an ancient language I barely understand
Only when I’m alone does the forest reveal itself to me
The damp places where the musk rises and lingers among the trees
The evening light shines through the tangled branches illuminating the air
I am alone in the presence of the creator
He doesn’t speak
I receive no words chapters or verses
I quietly become part 
Finally a sense of belonging in a place away from the world
The old pines rise like steeples under which I receive communion 
The Mourning Dove lifts my regrets and shame above the forest floor 
I rest in my place 
In her arms


Toby Gibson works as a social worker in east Tennessee. He has also worked as a musician throughout the southeast. His interests in projects related to the culture and history of southern Appalachia recently resulted in the documentary film, Echoes of Vardy for the Vardy Community Historical Society. Toby talks about that project and his own cultural history in an interview with Still: The Journal.


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