poem forest tree
I steal the Forest’s pain
Hoping for forgiveness,
Revelation or perhaps fame.
Black cherry trees cankered by fungus
Grow eructed, burled masses on their trunks,
High and low the trees slowly choke,
Rot, die and fall.
My chainsaw, feller of Forests entire,
Is here employed to save the lumber,
To slice the diseased knots,
To open them like jewels
Born of the struggle between vegetable and vegetable.
The burls revealed are little cosmic star-scapes,
Swirls of galaxies and nodes of pain.
I peer at the history, laid out like a doctor’s chart,
And polish the slab,
And wonder at the genesis of oceans of stars.
I need to know the story of the life and death of trees.
Our fate depends on Forests,
And Jesus died nailed to a tree,
And strange fruit hung from limbs in the evening
At the edge of town.
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