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For Mischa

If the trees were falling over;
limbs dropping in the drought years;
trunks derailed from the biome;
beetles having their way with a multitude of cultivars;
humans would parade our sophisticated
black clothes of opinion and talk
about that special tree
we climbed in our childhood

that made us fly and bend in the wind,
connect to the earth—as though we had strapped on an elm
and raced around the sun when we were nine.

If the trees were dying, burning,
diseased, broken, getting pruned from the neighborhoods;
the bare sky poking at our lungs;
the air thin with grief and fear;
then would you wish you planted
more and watered the good ones?

Posted 06/23/18
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