The silhouetted tree who this morning wore a sparkling sheath of knitted snowflakes and sunlight stood stripped bare and alone in the fading sun. Sadly, I looked at her and mourned her diminished state, her rich robes so recently lost. My eyes lifted to her twiggy branches reaching upwards to the darkening sky; vague thoughts of bygone summer days flitted dreamily in my mind. Verdant leaves whispering to the wind. Chirping friends celebrating life and promise. Squirrels racing delightedly up and down her trunk, daring her not to laugh with wild abandon. But now, alas, her glory departed, only a shadow of her former self remained. Turning to go, an abandoned nest caught my eye. No, two. No, three. Three nests in her branches! Then, unexpectedly, a specter of words wafted in my thoughts…a specter of a poem long forgotten, but deeply loved. “…A tree that may in summer wear a nest of robins in her hair…”
My melancholy vanished like mist in the sun.
I think that I shall never see
A poem 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.