The Cherry Tree

Post image for The Cherry Tree

Raw sky, thin grass, a naked cherry bough
Foretell the blossom that I hope to see –
Another springtime of this dying tree
Whose untold fruits have dropped where I stand now.

Each year the zany twigs put forth a show
So delicately poised as to suggest
The art that imitates them: grace and zest
Hung on a screen in distant Tokyo.

And, like a wondering Impressionist,
A night-school painter, or a five year-old,
I want to paint a picture that might hold
This image: nature with a human twist.

Or maybe not … Perhaps the greater grace
Is just to share the cherry’s time and space.

By Jonathan Steffen

First published in The Spectator, 22 February 2020

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