Felling the Tree

Felling the Tree

Today my eyes teared over
as they bulldozed the tree
in the undeveloped lot next door.

It had to be cut.
A house was being built there and
aside from the trash it dropped,
It blocked the view.

Always the one to get his point across,
“I’ll tell you what,”
the contractor said,
“I’ll dig it up and plant it in your yard.”

But I didn’t want the mess of it, either.
I wanted the tree next door
where I could see it
without  dealing
with the fluff in my pool,
the pods falling off.

That tree was a resting place for  birds
which I said good by to
along with the tree.
Then, while I was at it,
I said good by to my cat
who had drowned in the pool
a week before.

Good by to my husband
who had hoped to see that tree
and the view around it
every day for the rest of his life.

Good by to my mother,
who passed onto me
her love of trees.

Good by

to all loved creatures
recently gone.

The tree was gone in a minute,
along with dry bushes, weeds.
The back hoe scraped the soil over
Coke cans, water bottles,
plastic flowerpots and chips wrappers—
the detritus from houses on each side,
as well as evidence of years of workers
who sat in the shade of the lot for lunch.

For a year or two
of privacy lost, calm shattered,
peace surrendered,
I would get new neighbors,
perhaps a friend.

Clouds of dust billowed
over my newly painted wall.
They’d repaint the wall
and plant new trees,
the builder promised,
as they bulldozed all.


For Stream of Conscousness Dec. 11: Tree

26 thoughts on “Felling the Tree


    You did not say “this is not real”, so did you really lose that beautiful cat last week, are you really going to get close new neighbors~? Tell us the back story of your poetry this time~!!! Sounds too real~!


      1. Allenda Moriarty

        Judy such a touching poem. I remember house sitting for you in November that year, hearing all the noise, and laughter, as the men worked in the vacant lot. Felt sorry for you that you were going to have to lose a vacant lot to new neighbors. Also saw and heard them planting and pulling two palm trees upright amid much grunting straining and laughter. Who would have imagined that we would be moving into the new construction the following September, before it was actually completely finished?Loved the house, the view and our lovely neighbor, Judy Dykstra-Brown.

        Liked by 1 person


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