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The Wounded Tree, by Karen James
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The Wounded Tree, by Karen James.

It had been growing there long before they built the fence
Its trunk was slimmer then and its branches weren't as dense
Its movements weren't as contained as it grew in twists and turns

Surrounded by other growing things like mint and cloves and ferns
And then the humans came and built a place they called their dwelling
And the young tree heard the saws that cut the trees that they were felling
But he was young and un=mpressive and so they just ignored him
They built their house and their fence with actions that merely bored him

And there he stood in the corner with the fence built up against him
And as he grew it became apparent that the humans had somehow fenced him
There wasn't enough room in that corner for bot= the fence and tree
He felt the fence pressed up against him as he tried to grow free
But as a tree he was meant to=grow and there was nothing that could stop it

And if the fence thought it was strong the tree knew he could top
The fence was black cast iron its corner posts buried deep within the earth
And it was so close to the tree it looked like he had given birth
And as the young tree grew its body grew around and through the fence
It really didn't have much choice it was just a case of common sense
And what emerged was a strange synthesis of metal and of tree
But it was something most people walking down the street would never see

In places it looked like a painful bondage cutting deep into its bark
In other spots the black iron would emerge like something very dark
One spot held the metal forming a cross like it was petrified
And it somehow gave the image that the tree had been crucified
A long and painful looking scar travelled down its length
It made you wonder how it survived or where it found its strength
It looked like it had fought a war with battle scars its defining features
Its like these two things had joined together to create another creature
And there's no way they could be separated they'd finally become one
You couldn't cut this tree away the transformation had been done
The metal was now its armour growing deep inside its skin
There might have been a battle but both the tree and fence would win
And there on a lonely street they stood one inside the other
Forced against their wills they had become each other's brother
And no one saw the metamorphis it wasn't important enough to see
How a tree had grown around the fence until it became the tree

A testimony to its survival it made the fence a part of it
And besides the face that it looked wounded the fence became the heart of it
Nature has found a way to survive despite its penetration
And it hadn't even become a lesson in frustration

Just a creative solution to take the obstacle inside it

Not to be split in two or let the obstacle divide it
And it came up with a solution that ensured the humans couldn't take it
By growing around the fence it ensured that it would find a way to make it
And so I snapped some pictures of the resilience of the tree
And I wondered silently to myself what I would do if that were me












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The Wounded Tree, by Karen James