www.whyville.net Mar 13, 2004 Weekly Issue

Whyville Poet

The Redwood

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Pine needles crunch beneath
My sneakers
Sunlight filters through your branches
Dappling the forest floor
With pools of molten gold

The air is quiet
Reverent in your beauty and
Your ancient wisdom

I tilt my head
To gaze in awe up at you
The tallest living thing on Earth
Yet the gentlest
To you, I am but a newborn
Seeing the world in freshly-created eyes

I reach forward
And tenderly wrap my arms
Around your trunk
They reach such a small fraction
Of the way

I nestle my face in your
Tender red bark
And breathe in deeply
Of your sharp, woody scent
For I can almost smell the history
Smell the thousands of years you have lived
While ancient Egyptians toiled at the Great Pyramids
You were born
A tiny seed, transformed into a mighty tree
The Roman Empire rose and fell
Here you stood
A Great Wall was built in China
Here you stood
Christianity was born
Here you stood
King Arthur sat at his table
A Renaissance bloomed before your eyes
Wars came and went
Civilizations emerged, and went to their graves
Shakespeare, Columbus, Galileo
In the fabric of your life, they are all insignificant threads

A shaft of sunlight
Slanting through the branches
Reaches my eyes
Awakens me from my reverie
One last aromatic intake
Ripe bark,
Musty earth,
Sharp pine
And then I turn, walk away
Into the silent forest beyond


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