The Remembering Tree

(After ‘The Wishing Tree’ by Kathleen Jamie)

The Remembering Tree is a measured and subtly powerful debut Leopard Arts publication for Carol Shea. Channelling Kathleen Jamie, The Remembering Tree tells a story of a simple wish evocatively rendered as a moment of exquisite sacrifice.
Remembering Tree

I hear you again, feet lagging now

each careful step along frosted path                  


then uprooted in metred succession.   

No longer swarming through bracken  

or humming clover, not lifted on

laughter, no genial chattering nor

puffing breaths announce your approach.

I heard you then, heard your wishes

in breezy whispers, babbled appeals.

I felt your coppered gifts butted

into fissures, dispossessing

summer’s biota. I tasted pollutants,

the honeyed venom of countless

exchanges, tainting sap, obstructing arteries.

I hope your wishes were granted.

I hear you, not in summer now, though  

the same Atlantic gusts pound our limbs. 

Did you hear me when I fell?

Surrendering birdsong and tickling moth

larvae; greeting the rustle

of woodlouse and beetle

feasting on decaying    

moss and lichen in the hummocks.

I hope your wishes were granted.

I hear you again. Vibrations strong.

Once thorny, winter crowns

no longer bear seed, but dispersed

on wind or wing, rooted magically.

Re-generations not only endure,

but flourish.

Now I lie prone, a snag

in peaty puddles.

At last protected,


Studied.  A subheading on

a folklore page.

Find more poetry on Leopard Arts...