From dirt, the newly sprouted plant is but two tender leaves, drooping. Its silken shaft in subtle slant, in shadow of gardener, stooping. ... Becomes the tree standing stout -n- straight. Its leafy limbs doggedly swayed. Its own acorns now split and sprout, as the old man sits in its shade.
Under blue skies, the live oaks were just trees — hearty and expansive trees.
But in the feeble light of waning days or the frequent forays of morning fog, the rangy and sinuous moss-draped limbs became a Lovecraftian monster, head stuck into the damp loam in an attempted retreat to the underworld.
And if one stood still enough, those limbs just might start to writhe.
In this land of tropical green,
there is one tree timed to north lands.
Its leaves turn red from deepest green,
and fall as if to season’s plans.
They fall not by mere ones or twos,
but in wild, fluttering masses.
Inside, it gives one the bronzy blues
to starkly feel the year’s passage.
To see sunny-side branches nude,
and know the numbered days still left
for ever-redder multitudes
who suffer time’s — and wind’s — great theft.
No land is so foreign to me
that I can’t see home in a tree.
trunk bent at a right angle
and leaning to the south
yet, that tree shows no struggle
every second — day and night
gravity summons it to the ground
it’s survived more than a few monsoons
puddles and soggy soil
have conspired with gravity
the wind has conspired
climbing animals have conspired
alighting hawks and crows have conspired
the boy who crawled out the horizontal limb and swung conspired
for years they have conspired
but the tree rarely so much as trembles
it’s doomed, but that knowledge holds no sway
lonesome oak on a hill
having outlived your peers
your progeny denied the light
by scythe and mower blade alike
it’s said you speak by pheromone
but no whiff is caught when alone
your words disperse unsmelt
lost across a manmade veldt
if it’s any consolation
you have our unflagging admiration
you’re the model of stately poise
to all the little girls and boys
who swing about your stout limbs