Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Beech Tree

photo by sean, © 2009

by Suzanne Staniforth
Mindful Living Guide
March 24, 2009

This poem was written by Suzanne Staniforth, one of my creative writing students. The beech tree of which Suzanne writes was one she had watched through the seasons for decades on end, and, so, she knew it well. But, in moving from one East Sussex village to another about thirteen years ago, she had to leave it behind. She herein honors her great tree friend, and it is clear that she never left it at all, that it resides, still, within her, perhaps even more poignantly than when it was close at hand.

Huge beech tree was the beauty
Of the entrance to the wood
Ash-grey trunk and branches, up to crown.
Strong and deep the roots, to hold and support it.
The trunk looked smooth and easy to the touch
But age and weather had altered it to roughness.

Now spring was waking to reveal transformation
The sap was stirring from its winter sleep
Journeying upwards from lowest root it started.
The life restoring unguent forcing its way on and upwards,
Past the roots, and trunk, towards the waiting branches
Resurgence being brought about by nature.
At last it reaches the dry and waiting branches
Yet again the very utmost tips.
Always, a miracle of yearly transformation
Becomes a visual feast of wonder, and delight,
When opening buds release their glimpse of colour
Revealing first sight of their mist of green,
Only visible to the watching eye for beauty.
Rapidly the showers and the sunshine
Encourage the quick bursting of the leaf buds
Helping to reveal the splendour of the colour
The amazing spring adornment of the beech tree,
A perfect shade of lime against the grey.

© copyright 2009 by Suzanne Staniforth.