Tree from a window
The day shows you its colours,
its slates and browns, the rust
that runs into marrow-robbed bones,
even so, you want to lie in the wet grass,
let the distanced sun warm the skeleton
in the remains of this October daylight.
Before the damp ground that holds its dew now
forges new blades in the sharpened freeze of night
and you wear the rictus grin
of a memento mori scored into grey paving.
You miss the cry of the Nuthatch
from the Chestnut tree you can see from your window,
which is unburdened of her now, and its shady cover
of foliage and the ghosts' fingers of catkins,
its empty frame exposed, that all this life had clung to.
You imagine you hear her calls for justice again
as she hangs bat-like from the underside
of one buckled branch. But she has moved on.
She used to scuttle the lengthening harbours
of its bark, no woodland in sight,
perhaps she thought this tree had tricked her.
Her neat nest, her speckled clutch -
a mistake to roost in dangerous places,
you offered her all the stirred leaves of your empathy
sparked by the lonely fury you know when you come face
to face with your broken creations.
This twisted Chestnut traces its lineage
back to forests of Celtic deities and has seen every sorrow.
You wanted to say, little bird, let me paint on my wings
and disappear with you, next year
we'll invent yet more of our own tragedies together.
Image from pixabay of a lovely Nuthatch