Academic journal article Michigan Quarterly Review

An Elegy for the Tree

Academic journal article Michigan Quarterly Review

An Elegy for the Tree

Article excerpt

Which window, which morning

Would interpret the seas long, dark, frowning and confused dream?

I heard from the lips of the leaf

This green tongue,

In the mid-night dream,

That had washed its hymn in the creek:

In your loss, o, you robust tree,

The blessed sign of existence within oneself!

And we were not even spared time to cry.

I saw the first break of dawn, coupled with the blood of freshness,

In the slumber of your leaves.

I heard the first chirping of the morning birds,

The awake brightness of the creek,

In your blossoming.

The winds saw those sacred leaves and branches,

That this year and the other macabre years

Wore down under the shade of your incarceration.

The wall, the endless wall of your solitude,

Or the ancient wall of my hesitations,

Did not let your branches shine in the dawns laughter

Nor did they even allow the miserable doves,

Those who grieved for the death of the flower,

A month earlier and shed so many tears,

Moan for your silent elegy.

Even if there is no body outside this cage,

Even if nobody says a word across that shore,

As to which generous dawn bestowed this wave of light

Over the thirsty palm trees in the Sahara, Yemen, Eden.

But I am ashamed to glance in the dark, murky mirror!

Oh, in your silence, you robust tree,

The blessed sign of living within one's existence

To blossom and transcend,

To be fertile within oneself,

To develop roots within one's own soil. …

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