A Poem about a Lilac Tree

The lilacs are blooming

sweet perfume so thick in the air

you can almost touch it.

Bunches of pale purple pink white

Thumb-sized bees bumbling over

and around

and through

slick green leaves and twisting branches.

But mine

My little lilac did not survive the winter.

Two years planted

Two years growing

One month too long in deep snow

One week too long in deep cold

One day too long without . . . something

Wrapping

Warmth

Light

Too late.

I saw buds try to sprout, valiantly pushing

points unfolding

tips reaching out

Not enough.

The branches reach emptily to the giving sky

Withered twigs holding still

Frozen still

Nature’s artistic impression of cracks in stone

Lightning reversed in its bolt and encased

like Medusa’s victims of old.

All else is blooming and green and fragrant

My lilac tree shies away

lost in the background

embarrassed

unnoticed

grey and colourless

no new shoots

but weeds all around

waiting for new purpose —

its shape to be adapted in form.

Shall I rebirth it as a tiny house

and furnishings for my garden fae?

Weave the narrow branches

into a picture frame?

Soak and twist its fibres

braiding

combining

binding into place

what once was living wood into a case

for holding precious memories —

for the giving of gifts —

for the nurturing of seeds?

If everything has a purpose

meaning

fate

my lilac tree’s journey has not finished

at the end of my backyard.

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