Steve Meador is the author of Throwing Percy from the Cherry Tree, a poetry book that was an entrant for a National Book Award and the Pulitzer Prize in poetry. He is widely published in online and print journals. He has been a real estate broker since the early 1980s and currently lives and practices in the Tampa, FL, area.
Tuesday, February 1, 2011
Welcome to those following the blog trail of the Festival of the Trees. I will be posting several tree related photos and writings this month, so please stop back!
What better way to begin than with this massive oak located in Safety Harbor, FL
and a poem about the small oak in my own yard.
Advice to Parents
I have the tree everyone on my street hates.
The same tree the builder planted in every yard,
but mine is wild and gangly, a shock of twigs
and branches, with acorns that dangle freely.
The problem is that my tree resides in an area
that seeks conformity, where every plant must
be pruned and trimmed. Branches must be high,
so folks who don’t watch where they’re walking
won’t get poked in the forehead or eye. My tree is not
a pretty tree with its thrust and parry beyond boundaries
of acceptability. It gropes into spaces that interfere
with UPS or FEDEX trucks with drivers in conforming
uniforms delivering conforming packages to tan homes.
My tree dares to poke leaves into spaces which defy
the sheer madness of conformity. Its gathering of Spanish
and ball moss has choked the life out of smaller branches,
in a place where death is not allowed. If my tree could talk
it would not be in a shameful whisper. Nor would it bore us
in some cloned monotone. It would shout and scream:
“Look at me! With my gnarly bark and scraggly tentacles,
my unkempt beard. Gaze upon the glory of my wildness.”