The Tree

I met this tree the other day
She came upon me
as I went my way
We nodded in gentle assent
The way that strangers do
But then I turned
And looked again

I asked in wonder
Or maybe it was
an anguished cry
From deep within
Or maybe those are
one and the same
Because what I wonder
Most often lately is
how long
do You even hear me at all?

And there in that place
Where the wooded path
Met the open meadow
He stopped my heart
And told me to see.

this lifeless tree
Cracked and twisted
Pain and anguish
Etched into her soul
bursting with new life

She’s given herself in death
I said to myself.
Allowed a new thing
To sprout from the ruins
Of all she used to be.

Wait, He said
His hand pressing on my chest
Look again.
She is not dead.
That new life is hers
That strength is hers
That hope is hers

I looked at her
From every angle
It made no sense
It was not possible
And yet
there she was
And oh my heart cried
She is so



The trees are barren here.
Harsh and unyielding.
As if they cannot bear
To be exposed
To feel.
To breathe deeply and
Let anyone in.
There are no soft downy paths
Through moss covered giants
No tiny mushrooms
No golden yellow snails
Making their way over smooth round rocks
And across a layer of age softened needles and leaves

The water here puddles in soggy dips in the soil.
Every step feels like an intrusion.
I miss the sound of water trickling over stones
I miss the way the sky reflected in the wet pavement
As we walked down familiar roads.

No stump here comes close in size
Or in personality
To my old growth friends with wizened eyes
Bearded in green velvet.
Where do the fairies live?
There is no magic here.
No joyful surprise around every turn.
No you.
No me.
Only the barren empty husk
Of all we used to be.