Oak Tree


uncrowned king
of woodland and hedgerow,
your sturdy trunk
swells with each season,
over time your boughs
rot and break,

small creatures
make dark nests
within those fragrant bones

but you endure,
fresh branches
which age and
wither in their turn,
and again
dead portions,
mature and sweet,

admit burrowing
insect life
until their
houses crumble
to enrich the
hungry soil.

yet still, while
come and go,
harsh seasons
attack your extremities,
centuries die,
you endure,
towering over us,
feeding us,
breathing us
the gift of
clean air

© Jane Paterson Basil


9 thoughts on “Oak Tree

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