The Fortingall Yew's Tale Poem by Mervyn Graham

The Fortingall Yew's Tale

In Fortingall's embrace, the ancient yew tree stands tall,
For three millennia, it has witnessed it all.
From Celtic tribes' whispers to Roman legions' march,
Through medieval kingdoms, it remains an arch.
Clan warfare, religious changes, and nature's fury,
Yet in Perthshire's heart, it tells a timeless story.

A guardian of secrets, in its silent domain,
The 3000-year-old yew, a symbol that will remain.
Rooted deep, in Perthshire's soil it thrives,
A living legend, where time contrives.

In Celtic settlements, ancient and proud,
The yew tree stood, its branches bowed.
Observing rituals, lives intertwined,
As Celtic tribes flourished, their culture defined.

Come the Roman occupation, mighty and grand,
Legions marched, a conquest planned.
The yew tree watched as forts arose,
Then Roman roads cut through where rivers flows.

In medieval Scotland, kingdoms rise,
Battles rage 'neath ever-changing skies.
Castles and monasteries, towers tall,
The yew tree witnessed it all.

Clan warfare, a fierce display,
Scottish clans in disarray.
Skirmishes fought, alliances formed,
The yew tree stood amidst, yet unharmed.

Through religious changes, tumultuous time,
Spread of Christianity, a spiritual climb.
Monasteries built, abbeys rise,
The yew tree gazes, its branches wise.

Natural disasters, fury unleashed,
Storms and floods, the land besieged.
Yet the yew tree remained, steadfast and strong,
A symbol of resilience, where it belongs.

Industrial revolution, a new age dawns,
Factories roar, as progress spawns.
Railways snake across the land,
But the yew tree's roots remain, firmly stand.

World wars ravage, turmoil reigns,
Troops mobilize, as the nations men strain.
Yet the yew tree stands, a silent witness,
To the horrors of war, in its quiet stillness.

Environmental changes, the world transforms,
Climate shifts, mother nature mourns.
But the yew tree endures, its presence profound,
A beacon of hope, in our world, unwound.

Cultural shifts, from past to present,
Traditions fade, innovation incessant.
Yet the yew tree remains, a silent sage,
A living connection to a bygone age.

Through it all, through the ebb and flow,
The ancient yew tree continues to grow.
A silent sentinel, through three millennia past,
A living testament, to time's steadfast.

Mervyn Graham (cc 2024)

The Fortingall Yew's Tale
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