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Poem: Tree

Books & Poetry

In today’s Poet’s Corner contribution, Rory Harris shares another poem of family memory.

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I can’t recall the tree ever being planted
it just was, one day a sapling which just grew
some sort of flowering eucalypt
out of place in the front yard
among a willow, ornamentals & daffodils
I don’t remember the year of the drought
which killed it off
but it’s stayed standing & dead
maybe fifty foot & brittle for what seemed forever
with quotes for its removal stuck to the refrigerator
the old man was never keen
more indifference than cost
or the indifference of cost
mum always liked it when it flowered
when the old man died & house was sold
the buyer knocked it down
along with the old man’s house
a big block, good soil
without its shadow of the past
& a blank canvas to dream on
somewhere in the suburbs
there might be a chain-sawed stack
of flowering gum
staked against the coming winter.

Rory Harris teaches at CBC Wakefield Street in Adelaide, South Australia. Earlier this year, his poem “The Key” was also published in Poet’s Corner.

Readers’ original and unpublished poems of up to 40 lines can be emailed, with postal address, to A poetry book will be awarded to each contributor.


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