Yew Trees – A Symbiotic Poem brought back to mind in Barrow on Soar cemetery

An avenue of yew trees cut down by more than half in Barrow on Soar cemetery

Out on a drift with Russ Ralph of Bred Pudding Collective we talk of Man Of The North and other works in progress when we come across this avenue of yew trees. The heavily cut back trees made me think back to my poem ‘Yew Trees’ a symbiotic poem written inside and with William Wordsworth’s poem Yew Trees with Shiki the great Japanese haiku master on my shoulder:

Yew Trees

a yew tree
standing in its own

you notice him
in a crowded room
everyone does
we were so much alike
he even shared my make-up

a young man
standing in his own

solitary tree
of vast circumference
evening shadows

he stayed with me
for the first few months
but then he left
a man like him needs space
we live in one bedroom

solitary boy
in the shopping mall
a few loose coins

pillared shade
four trees with huge trunks
of intertwisted fibres

we come here often
resting under the yew trees
on the old park bench
his dad comes sometimes
when he remembers

pillared shade
he makes this weeks
rent in the coppice

below the branches
grassless floor
of red and brown leaf litter

he’s a good baby
never causes a big fuss
just like his dad was
according to grandma
he can already say “dad”

below the branches
grassless floor
of needles and swabs

Paul Conneally

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