“His mind’s all black thickets and blood” from Songs of Unreason
The oak was ancient And he stood there nearby, his mind
once sturdy, but now all black thickets and blood
sapped of strength clogged
bent by the elements frail
but still remembering spring he smiled for what once was
This is a cleave poem for Day 23 of Jilly’s 28 Days of Unreason, inspired by the work of Jim Harrison.
I love this form. This is excellent!
Thank you very much!
the analogy works so well not least because of the sap/blood equation- have never tried a cleave poem – harder than it looks!
Thanks so much, Laura. We had an arborist look at our trees today, and he mentioned something about the tree arteries clogged–I think that must have been in my mind.
did he suggest a cure? p.s. the older I get, the more I love trees, especially all those older than me!!
My favorite old oak seems ok. He said one of the red oaks cannot really be treated at this point, but they can fertilize and keep it going for awhile (maybe another 10 years). Another oak if it seems to have whatever the problem is can be injected with something (like a tree shot), which can treat the disease. We have two maples by the curb that are will probably have to come down at some point.
some you win, some you lose – not all bad news for your trees at least
Lovely, Merril, and the poem works so well!
Thank you very much, Jane!
I love oak trees 🙂
So do I. I was happy to hear that the arborist thought my favorite oak seems healthy.
I’m pleased to hear it. Do you get capricorn beetles? We get a particularly huge one that eats oak trees. I saw one this spring, but they’re protected (on account of their ugliness maybe). I was going to try hitting it with a log but husband advised against it. They fly…
These are small ones. They can grow up to 12cms not counting the antennae.
Ewww. No, I don’t think we have anything like that. We just called an arborist to look at all of our trees, and he said red oaks often get an infection that can be treated in the early stages by giving them a sort of injection. One of the oaks definitely has it, and it’s too late to do the injection, but he can keep it going for a while by fertilizing it. I found some kind of huge creepy-crawly in a big–empty–pot I had sitting on the stove yesterday morning. That woke me up!
Shame about the oak. I’m not a beetle fan either. There’s a bit of controversy about the oak-eater. It’s an endangered species so protected, but in the south west it’s quite prolific, does a lot of damage, and conservationists are asking wouldn’t it be better to keep the trees than a load of relatively common beetles?
Yeah, I’d rather protect the oak, too. 🙂
There’s only so much love I can spare for beetles.
Another great cleave poem, Merril. I really like how the three elements weave through each other.
Thank you very much, Ken.
Contrapuntal excellence! The layout is wonderful and I enjoyed the full meanings of all 3. Beautifully woven!
Thank you, Vivian!
So cool. I’ve only ever written one poem of this type. I should try it again. You’ve inspired me again!
Thank you, Luanne, and yay that I inspired you! 🙂
I love this – it’s trees, it’s aging, it’s the on-going joy of spring now and spring remembered. The form works really well here, each stands alone, but the combination is perfectly smooth.
Thank you very much, Sarah!
This is a quite splendid triptych
Thank you so much, Derrick.
Wonderfully mythological. (K)
Oh I love this! Dunno that I would have the courage to try one… but hey, ya never know…
Thanks so much, Dale.
Right–you never know! 🙂
Hmmm… well I did try a poem today… so you never know!
I really like what you did with this — I keep re-reading it in different ways, and each way works.
Thank you very much!
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