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One toadstool stood all alone

On the forest floor.

Surrounded by leaves beyond their prime,

He felt he wanted more.


“I’m lonesome,” he said.

With that he cried

And dropped his button head.


The whimper was heard throughout the wood

And fairy and animal alike

Stopped their daily doings

To help their neighbor with his plight.


They put down their nuts and seeds,

Stopped nibbling their grass and clover,

Retired their hammers deep in the earth,

And the spinning of orbs was over.


A flutter of fairy wings,

A skitter of little mice feet,

A faint, but steady, beat could be heard

Coming from gnomes tromping peat.

They bounded and they hopped,

They flew and they snuck

Out of trees, brush, dens and high nests.

They could not stop, they would not stop

Till the source of the whimper’s needs was met.


“Sounds lonely,” said one.

“Sounds sad,” said another.

And with that, the search party proceeded.

The source, they did find,

Was the lonely toadstool–

They were thankful his cries they had heeded.

The sound of his neighbors caused him to lift 

His tiny head up from the earth.

The love and comradery he felt at that time

Surpassed all else’s worth.


They held hands and danced around him,

To show him he wasn’t alone.

“But I’m NOT one of you. I’m just a toadstool,

And from here I cannot roam.”


The wind, she heard his loneliness.

The rain, she heard his cry.

The sun heard his desperation 

And hid himself, with a sigh.


Now the rain could sprinkle down,

And the wind blew all around.

This continued for most of the day

In a measured and benevolent way.

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His neighbors, however, remained with him,

Though they still didn’t feel quite like kin.

They held him while he quietly grieved.

The lonely toadstool was still so bereaved.


Then, all of a sudden, he let out a cry

And his despair floated away, by and by.

The wind carried it off to places unknown,

And our toadstool felt light, as though he was “home.”


When just the right time finally came,

Little toadstools popped up

That looked very much the same.

There was a gasp of surprise, a giggle, then more, 

As his “friends” noticed on the forest floor,

New-sprung neighbors all around–

Just like toadstool– encircling them on the ground!


So let your cries out, your anger and woe,

Along with your joys and delight.

Your neighbors will come, once they know,

And will stand with you day and night.


The sun will listen, as will the wind,

The water and wood alike.

All that can happen is wholeness and strength

When you let it all out.

It’s alright.


So the lonely little toadstool,

Once alone on the forest floor,

By letting his voice and needs be heard

Found he was lonely no more.

- Kristin Addington Culpepper

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