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Saturday, August 18, 2012

The Language of Trees

I have loved trees since I was old enough to swing from a branch, or sit under their shade, or climb them.  Finally I completed my collection of poems about trees, which are published through, complete with color photos.  I include two excerpts here to give readers a glimpse of what is in the collection.  First is my foreword and then a picture and poem from the season of summer, for a quick snapshot.  The book itself can be found on and will soon also be available on and some other sites.



            There is no better time to study trees than now.  Trees live in the moment, drawing upon the earth for sustenance, from the air, from the sun, from the rain.  I have always loved trees.  As a child, I sized up every tree in sight on the basis of whether it was a good “climbing tree” or not.  When we lived in Honolulu, I loved to play on and under those wonderful Banyan trees.  They constituted a playground in themselves, touched by mystery and nurture.
            My life has always sought the solace of trees:  a hideaway where I could read without interference, a place for a swing, the shade from a Southern summer sun, the scattering of fruits, pecans, walnuts and chestnuts out of their abundance, the statuesque quality in a landscape of snow.  When one must be cut down in the interest of commerce and street building, I weep.  When others fall after buffering by storms, I grieve.  When a forest is felled for its lumber and commercial value, I am enraged.  Trees belong to this planet as gifts to honor and care for, to increase our connections to the world around us.  I give thanks daily for the trees I have met, known intimately, played under and in, blessed for their shelter of birds and squirrels and cicadas.  This collection is my thanksgiving to the trees of this world.