Friday, August 3, 2007

Three Trees Leaning

In the grounds of Strokestown House,
Where, every year,
Newborn free verse poetry
Totters out of the open French windows
And gambols with the lambs
On spindly, uncertain legs,
There stand three trees leaning.
Leaning like broken teeth,
Each points not heavenward,
But slightly to the left of it,
As if heaven were a cliché to be shunned.
What caused this angular deviation from the norm?
One could be a maverick.
Two might be coincidence,
But three suggests a revolutionary movement,
Breaking from tradition with an impudent flourish.
The three trees of the apocalypse?
Where should the poet aim? At heaven?
Or slightly to the left of it?
Words flying staccato-like
Through the stratosphere and ionosphere,
Each chiselled like a personal bullet.

Three pillars to the inexact science
Striving obliquely toward literary perfection.
Silvered bark, straight and sleek,
Roots buried deep in the earth
On which druids recited to deafening applause.
Did their words fly to their target
As from three cannons pointed at the invading army?
Did their words find their range,
Or did the lyrical bombs drop harmlessly short
Unheard and ignored
Amid a cacophany of alarm bells?

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