Paul Murdoch

Rookie (1961 / Alexandria)

A Sacred Space For Every Tree - Poem by Paul Murdoch

A twisted stem, a battered bow
Unhinged by vengeance, here and now.
The view; the sunlight; blocked, defiled
By leaf and branch; their tempers riled.

The cut is deep and violence terse,
Frustrations burn beneath the earth.
But don’t forget who put it there,
That hallowed Beech, that tortured stare.

The Tree; the Man; a struggle set,
Let tempers fray and timbers fret,
But just remember who will wait
Alone and friendless at your gate,

Sliced and hacked beyond belief,
A leaf will sprout in summer’s heat;
When old and grey, you’re deep below
Your bones will feed, and sap will flow.

So love the shade and praise the green
Of nature’s guardian, tall and lean;
Stand proud and trace the wizened bark,
And let its branches make their mark.

Let gentle leaves brush past your face
Entwine your pride and shun disgrace,
Let seeds fall down, hold fast and root;
Let squirrel hide; bird distribute.

The tree gives us our right to breathe
And jump and sing and laugh and seethe.
Let phloem, xylem, root and stem
Stand fast; a sight for every man.

Let us lay down our saw and bow,
Instead to dig and plant and sow,
Just smile and feel the cooling wood
Where countless generations stood.

And take the time to love the tree
That led our lord to Calvary.
That built our cities; gave us life.
Give up the saw and axe and knife.

Stand back and feel the gentle sway
Of every night and every day,
Majestic! May there ever be
A sacred space for every tree.

Comments about A Sacred Space For Every Tree by Paul Murdoch

  • (2/24/2008 12:57:00 AM)

    A resounding call to the tree. Well written and versed.

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Poem Submitted: Saturday, April 1, 2006

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