Ketuvim: Trees

Melodies I weave, songs I sweetly sing;
Longing for your presence, to you I yearn to cling.

In the shade of trees I delight to dwell,
To grasp your mystery, captured by your spell.

I glorify you with words and song,
Declaring with my heart: for you I long.

When I can’t see you, I write your praises,
And though I don’t know you, I long for your places.

To the assembled birds and your branches speech,
You alluded to your wisdom that is sometimes beyond our reach.

The scope of your greatness and the marvel of your strength
Are reflected in your bark and described at great length.

They have painted you, but rarely as you are;
They draw your colors and portray you from afar.

They speak of you in poems in countless varied visions,
While you remain throughout all their renditions.

They try to portray you as one now young, now old,
With leaves now green, now red and turning gold.

Nothing is more precious among the earth’s good pleasures,
Than sitting against a tree, chief among forest treasures.

-adapted from “Hymn of glory” in Siddur Sim Shalom
-Shadow

To be a tree

My back against a tree

as my mind aimlessly wanders

Til at last

I begin to ponder.

Oh how I love

how the wind caresses my skin

and how it swirls

The leaves into a spin.

What does the tree think

of this silent whisper?

Of the whipping air

when it grows crisper?

I wonder about

the life of a tree

who never speaks

nor have eyes to see.

Yet they all

have a story to tell

wrapped up inside

its strong bark shell.

View their branches

and ponder their shape

look at the vine

of which the trunk cannot escape.

See their leaves

their various shape and color

Consider its life

does it know dolor?

I wonder what it’s like

to be a tree

I wonder what it’s like

To just be.

© Shadow