A Summer Tree

She is a summer tree

Intent on putting on blossoms

Intent on yet putting on fruit

Ere winter claims her


Tall for her variety

Her limbs are yet so sparse

Some snapped off at trunk

Most pruned at twig 


Yet below curled bark

The green wood is ripe of life

The sap tacky to ones touch

As if eager for growth


Under her thick mulch

The roots run out deep & wide

Down past hard rock adversity

Out past drought circle


The orchard about her

Has too often taken the trophy

Gold ribbon at the county fair

Records at the harvest


But gradually the trees

All gave way to the developers

Turned one by one to fire wood

Or split in winter wind


This tree now stands alone

In the gentle garden of her dreams

Eager to bear fruit not for market

But for sheer delight of life


About Peter Notehelfer

I'm a retired people person who now finds the time to watch the little details of the world without worrying about being watched by anyone . . . I live on an Island north of Seattle with my wife named Ellen, a yellow dog named McGee, a yellow cat named Gatzby, and four fine chickens . . . I read fiction, bake bread, smoke salmon, and fish whenever the weather allows . . . Oh, and yes, I try to write a poem every day simply to avoid senility!
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4 Responses to A Summer Tree

  1. back in my beloved Princeton and environs – in the anachronistically nicknamed Garden State – we used to say that our biggest cash crop was condominiums – as farm after farm gave its lovely rural acres to the bulldozers


    • Years ago I spent some time in Princeton where my brother was a PHD candidate and I was studying in NYC . . . Wherever you turn now the developers have paved over the land . . . Even scarred trees are a reminder of the fruitful land we once were . . .


  2. I love that last verse and especially the line ‘garden of her dreams’


  3. Thanks, Michelle, for the nice comment and for the reads of previous poems . . . I appreciate your interest . . .


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