An Old Tree

By Lorna Ye

Rough flaky bark
mottled with crusty specks,
lumpy trunks and branches
gnarled with age,
the old tree overlooks the
gentle slope of the rolling grass that
merges with the solitary mountain
in the distance, saddened
by the passage of time.

Its old days were imbued with
amusing moments, where
farm dogs bounced and sprinted, and
curled up for a quick afternoon nap,
a swarm of girls huddled and giggled, and
whispered out their fancy dreams,
young couples hugged and kissed, and
longed for a home filled with music and flowers.

Where are they now?
The question swinging out of the memory
stirred up a wave of loss.
Years slip away like leaves stripped
off its branches by ruthless gust.
Those familiar faces are nowhere to be seen.
Only the old tree now, in the original place,
forgotten, withering.

A soft tingling feeling suddenly ripples
through its weather-stricken skin.
A vine spouts out of a strayed seed
and trails upward against its trunk,
heart-shaped leaves tender and velvety
like a baby’s little hands, yearning
for a warm place to hold.

A new life, right under its canopy,
is growing and thriving.
The old tree invites the vine to stretch
on its knots and gnarls,
cracks and hollows,
carved by hands of nature
hardened by weather and seasons.
Each mark or wrinkle tells a story,
a memory, a lesson.

Life continues
Hope never fades
even if it’s tentatively unnoticed.

© 2019, Lorna Ye. All Rights Reserved