Monday, 20 August 2012

Who Speaks For The Trees?

Enjoying my summer break, but first...

A reader has been in touch to say she would never travel on the London Underground again following the tragic events of July 7th 2005 in which she lost a close friend. Similarly, she would never visit the USA because ‘ it has to be a high profile target for terrorists.’ .

While I can understand and sympathise with how she feels, terrorists can strike anywhere at any time. We can but remain hopeful that we will leave our homes for work or whatever and return safely. Besides, if we give in to our fear of terrorists and their misguided belief that they are entitled, for whatever reason, to force their views on others by means that confirm the existence of evil in the world… they have won.

Dare I suggest that Earth Mother, too, should be on her guard against those set n destroying the environment? (I may be getting on in years now but I will always be an eco-warrior at heart.)


Two so-splendid trees
stood tall at the edge of a wood,
conspiring with song
and laughter, symphony and poetry
to run the gamut of serendipity;
all loves, hates, jealousies, captured
in shades of evergreen
on the costliest canvas seen
among the sweetest,
finest blessings of Nature,
redefined by Man
in its own flawed image,
redesigned to suit
an ailing humanity along lines
of a well-meaning insanity
coursing the soul; would-be giants
grown tall, sentinels
of a civilization protective of its own
for want of a wisdom of ages
(found in history’s bloody pages?)
inciting song and laughter,
symphony and poetry to stand tall
among giant trees,
denying that Nature knows best
and mankind least
for all its Grand Imagination
touching on salvation
to defend a dereliction of duty
in saving the woodlands
for generations, rather give trees
up to property developers
for the sake of tax gatherers
giving them the eye
and even if a risen Jesus pass by,
they’ll not look up and see us,
hear leafy winds whisper the names
of all those fallen in their prime
to flames risen from anxious embers
here, there, everywhere, now as always,
no matter the day or year

Copyright R. N. Taber 2004; 2005

[Note: This poem has been slightly revised (2012) from the original version that  appears in  A Feeling For The Quickness of Time by R. N. Taber, Assembly Books, 2005]

No comments :