The Bones of Trees

The Bones of Trees

The split of earth and sky 
blurs in greys
as we tilt toward sunlight
and hope.
The there and back–
slate-coloured, 
tarmac black. 
Dogs pull on leads, 
worn red,
crossing streets without caution,
but panting smiles. 
Memorials like seeds,
staked by tipping monuments
not ours to keep but read.
For a dog a graveyard
is a yard.
How lovely to be remembered
in a place like this
where dogs fetch sticks for bones
or leap through gaps 
between standing stones?
For me, a graveyard
is nature’s repose.
Partial, 
short-form testimonies 
of passing lives
in loud voices, 
whispers, sighs.
Memorials jut,
growing tall in short shadows
of changing seasons,
from cold to warm,
while trees store
memories of the passing
from living to lore.
Heaven comes in unexpected packages.
Life is pleasure 
and sadness.
We mourn from the day we are born.
Love the bloom, fear the demise –
the remaining rose-hip, the browned hydrangea,
the darkening of summer light.

The blackbird might
confuse night from day,
yet still sings,
trilling in canon
and in time.
For humans?
Too many misspent rhymes.

My hope and sadness dwell
In the small and grand,
In trees as they shift from
Fulsome to bare
withstanding elemental wails,
Or daisies in defiance,
Or...wagging tails.

My dog pisses on gravestones,
my guilt, my release, my laughter.
No tragedy here.
What was, short or long,
a passing season in a charted grove,
the smell of spring,
the crunch of calloused snow.

Still, the scope of us,
our inner monument's
tattoos
ensue,
ever-responsive
to cues, we shift,
and write, and move.
Dogs play as it comes and goes.
within fieldstone walls,
composed squares and angles
against churchyards.
The pealing of bells, the sense
of hour on hour,
the sacred in silence.
How quickly we forget
the wild and rare.
My dog sniffs and fetches.
I admire those who knew 
the once flesh of soulful pursuits, now, in stone,
while trees in winter?
The sturdy bones.