A Pine Tree

I would like to be a pine tree

resistant to the killing frost

the unexpected unbearable load of early snow

that collapses my branches, my limbs

 

To stand majestic and silent

impassible as years slip past and evaporate

like drops of dew in early morning light

Producing sturdy cones that fall

hopeful to fertile ground

 

But gone would be the tender green shoot

the fragrant blossom kissed by bees and wasp

Gone the soft leaf that flickers in the wind

catching glints of sun

Gone the golden glorious transformation

as days grow short and colder nights move in

Gone the eventual unavoidable fall

a carpet of crisp brown leaves at my base

 

I would rather be a pine tree that stands untouchable, immutable

immune to the destruction of killing frost

the devastation of heavy snow

But I would have to give up the fragile green shoot

the fragrant bloom

Published in The Prairie Journal,

A Magazine of Canadian Literature

#72, 2019

Calgary underwent a great flood in 2013, and then in 2014, a severe Ice Storm.  Trees were still in leaf, branches were not able to support the weight of snow which turned to ice, and many trees were devastatingly damaged.  I remember driving up Elbow Drive towards the school at which I teach, so many limbs on the road ... I wondered how people must have felt in wars, to see their loved ones felled.

This photo was taken from the National Post article on the event:

© 2020 by poet Josephine Lia LoRe

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