I Am the Tree

I am the tree in the forest

Wanna be lovers come

To carve their names upon

And I am mostly dead

So they do not hear me scream

I am the tree in the forest

Children come to break a branch from

Since I am mostly dead

It snaps perfectly off

As though it was never mine

I am the tree in the forest

Lovers who have known a sheltered life

See and shake their heads and murmur

What happened?

Or,

The next wind might knock that one out

Theirs may hurt the most

Because I can hear them

I am the tree in the forest

Whose roots never quite took hold

There is never new growth

Year after year since birth

I have stood naked

Mocked and used by many

The other trees in the forest

They weep with sorrow and reverence

Each year they shed their last leaf

Sometimes I hear the wind carry

Their whispers

“That, dead tree just doesn’t understand”

The other trees in the forest

Do not know it but I ache to be a part

Of the rebirth and shedding

How lovely to be fully alive

To be, of it all

The other trees in the forest

Do not know it

But I feel everything said and done to me

Like the sharp pain of a saw

To a fresh baby tree

Because I never grew fully nourished

I am the tree in the forest

Never with new growth

Branches weakly hanging

Almost begging the wind to please

Uproot

What little holds on

I am the tree in the forest

Others come to use and abuse

Marking my bark with their conquest

Ripping my arms from my side

Even beating me with myself

Sharp pain, sharp pain

Was my introduction to the earth

When I got planted

They ripped the roots in half

Grunting like gorillas

They said

It is done

The earth does her best

You cannot grow what is not there

I can only receive what I have

But the foundations were severed

And all these years I stand in

Sharp pain. Feeling everything

Like humans living with raw nerves

Exposed

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