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By John I. Blair

I do not know what forest
Lost the tree from which
This iron-hard wood was cut
So many years ago.

The woodsman’s children
And their children
Are likely gone by now
And yet the wood remains

Here in the corner of my room,
Its form this dowdy dresser,
Already old the day I got it
In Kansas at a junk store.

Plain as a clerk it holds
My socks, my undershirts,
My handkerchiefs, my shorts
And other items not so needful.

In my optimistic youth
I bought bright handles, knobs
Of polished brass (tarnished now
And blending with the oak)

But think I missed the meaning.
The tree, whose golden bones
Reside beside me as I sit here,
Represents the gift of rain,

Sun, air, soil, Earth’s bounty
To its citizens that’s never free;
The cycle, after all,
Does not complete without me.

© John I. Blair 2009

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