If today was a poem it would be Trees by the American poet Joyce Kilmer:
I think that I shall never see
A poem as lovely as a tree
A tree whose hungry mouth is prest
Against the earth's sweet flowing breast
A tree that looks at God all day,
And lifts her leafy arms to pray,
A tree that may in Summer wear
A nest of robins in her hair
Upon whose bosom snow has lain
Who intimately lives with rain
Poems are made by fools like me
But only God can make a tree
While Kilmer had strong religious faith that coloured his work, it is the link between poetry and trees that struck me profoundly. At the end of my street grows a small stand of rubber trees. That's the situation as it stands today. Some time this week that will change. Those rubber trees are not native and their roots are destructive. An embankment between the high and lower level of the road is being undermined as are the foundations of the townhouses.
There has been a huge debate on what should happen because while pretty much everyone knows the trees are in the wrong place, no-one blames the trees. Their planting may have been an error of the past but their shade, the screening they provide and the wildlife that enjoy them is undeniable. People generally understand that the trees may have to go but no-one will rejoice their going as such. At least that's the way I see it. So this afternoon before the chainsaws arrive, our new Greens councillor Jonathan Sri organised a gathering under the trees. He even climbed one of the trees where he joined Adrian Buzolic from the West End Community Association. Sitting in the tree Adrian was looking for something poetic to read to the group gathered below. He decided on a piece from The Prayer Tree by Michael Leunig.
"A person kneels to contemplate a tree and to reflect upon the troubles and joys of life. The person imagines mornings and evenings in a great forest of prayers, swarming and teeming with life. The person is learning how to pray".
And as a small note pinned to one of the trees said: "Trees are poems the earth writes upon the sky". Yes, today was a day where it seemed totally okay to get all poetic about trees.
Today's Global Corporate Challenge steps: 14,534