Ode to a tree

Ode to a tree

Don’t you just love big trees? When we moved here almost five years ago, we had two pretty soft maple trees in our back yard. My husband hung a porch swing from the big one. Our grandson and the neighbor boys and I spent a lot of time in that swing. Our grandson’s favorite game was to play that the swing was a pirate ship, he was the captain, and I was his “Mate”. We are bird lovers, and the trees encouraged them to visit our yard.
After a couple years we noticed that the big one was dying. Then last year the little one died. We called a nursery and found that soft maples are very susceptible to beetles.

The dead trees were an eyesore and they began to bug me. I knew that it would cost a pretty penny to get them cut down. My Minister husband, who is a jack-of-all-trades, decided that he could cut down the smaller one. He fired up the chain saw and cut it down without a hitch. He cleaned the yard up in a jiffy. Emboldened by his success,
he began eyeing the big one. He said, “I’ll just cut this lower limb.” It came down right where he planned. Then another one, and another one came down. Our son came over to help Dad and they decided they could cut the last limb. With a rope attached and son in the tree to make the cuts, they began. The only problem - this one hung in the opposite direction over our neighbor’s yard. The limb would not budge. A neighbor from across the street came over and offered to help. Although cut almost all the way through, the limb still would not move. The sun was going down. The neighbor, being a member of the local police department, decided to call in some help Here came the fire truck with the long ladder, a rescue unit, a smaller fire truck, a couple police cars, and what seemed to be dozens of volunteer firemen.
By this time all the neighbors were in the street watching. Our neighbor’s wife asked her husband, “Are you responsible for all these guys being here?“ He answered, “I guess I am, but I didn’t intend for them all to come.“ Ameren IP came to drop some wires. With the help of the ladder truck, a stronger rope was attached and the small fire truck pulled the limb down, just where it was supposed to fall.
All of this excitement for one stubborn husband and one stubborn limb. We are thankful to all the men who came to help. The neighbors want the wood and the brush is cleaned up. Our yard is bare. It is sad to have the trees gone. We’ll plant more, but it will take many years for them to get the size of the big maple that had to come down.
This is a funny story NOW, although it was NOT the night of the incident.

Do you remember learning this poem in grade school? It says it all - - -

by Alfred Joyce Kilmer (1886-1918)*
I think that I shall never see
A poem lovely as a tree.
A tree whose hungry mouth is prest
Against the earth's sweet flowing breast;
A tree that looks at God all day,
And lifts her leafy arms to pray;
A tree that may in Summer wear
A nest of robins in her hair;
Upon whose bosom snow has lain;
Who intimately lives with rain.
Poems are made by fools like me,
But only God can make a tree.


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