Thursday, April 16, 2009

Old Tree


The pale stem curls
Through the damp dark ground
Lifts its seeded head
Sheds its outgrown crown.

Seed leaves open
Stretch high to the sun
White roots grip the earth
A frail life begun.

Rain falls, sun shines
Storms rage and wane
Roots probe more deeply
Stem droops, pushes up again.

Young plant grows
Stem thickens, leaves thrive
Young sapling rejoices
Strong, healthy, alive.

Years come and go
Trials by fire and flood
Old tree is now scarr’d
Has wept its own blood.

Old tree is strong
Has seen and has heard
Has swung the old swing
Has cradled the bird.

Seeds in the wind
From old tree are cast
He whispers a blessing
To the first through the last:

“My strength will fade
My branches will fall
May your roots sink deep
May you grow very tall.

“Trials will come
May your heart be strong
May you bend and not break
May your days be long.”

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