One beautiful evening in early April, we found ourselves on the streets of the historic city of Hiroshima. Armed with a digital map, we were three tired souls ready to dump our bags after a long day of travel, eager to take off our shoes and put our tired feet to rest, before settling into our cosy hotel room on the 16th floor, which had absolutely amazing views of the city, particularly the canal overlooking the Atomic Dome in the distance.
But before that happened, on our way to the hotel, I saw this tree as we were waiting for the lights to change—a bare tree, stark and resolute, right in the middle of a busy thoroughfare.
There was something about the tree that haunted me for the rest of the evening. At bedtime, when I logged my diary entry for the day, I wrote about the tree. This was the poem that I scribbled that night, never really intending to share with the world that would be ready to scoff at me for giving words to the mind of a tree. Well, to heck with the world. Here goes my poem along with the image shot that evening.
What A Tree In Hiroshima Once Told Me
Having shed the leaves of my youth,
I stand before you, shorn of my branches,
and leaves and flowers
and everything else that made me ‘me’.
Stripped by the winds of time
I still stand, useless though you may say—
linear, alone and bare.
Waiting to burn in your hearth as fire
Or a frame for you to blow,
Or be carved into a leg of a table; or a chair,
or a harp, to let sweet melody flow.
Make, what you will, of me—
But, here I stand resolute,
Until my very dying breath,
Eager to be put to use!
© Esha Mookerjee Dutta. April 06, 2019
Joining Parul today for #thursdaytreelove which is a photo feature on her blog that brings you beautiful trees from different places every second and fourth Thursday of the month.
If you would like to play along, post a picture of a tree on your blog and link it back to her post.
Lovely click and beautiful poem
Your poem really made me think of every tree which must be thinking this.
You have penned down so nicely.
I’m glad you went ahead and shared the words from this tree. I do believe trees have much to tell us, though not everyone is able to hear them. It takes a special kind of openness. Good job!
What a lovely poem, Esha and seeing the tree and where it was I can imagine how those thoughts ran through your mind.
I would love to see Hiroshima one day. It must be a sombering feeling to be there. Thanks for showing me a part of it, Esha. I am so grateful. I lhope to see you back on the 10th.
Evocative piece of writing, as always my friend. The gnarled tree has so many stories to tell, just like you dearest Esha. Hugs xoxo
Beautiful! Both your words and the tree.. Its great that the authorities have maintained the tree when making the path!
The way that tree was incorporated into the path makes me wonder if it was a survivor of the atomic bomb attack. It gave me chills to think of that.
Beautifully said… and the fact that this is Hiroshima adds an extra air of resoluteness to that tree standing strong there
Those are some very soulful words Esha – such a bare looking tree brought forth such creativity in you. Thanks for sharing this
Thanks for those kind words, Shalini. So glad to see you here after a long time. 🙂
I was in Hiroshima in late May, so I probably stood next to that same tree, except that it would have enjoyed a rebirth in late spring/early summer. Lovely poem.
Oh really? Thanks for sharing that bit of info, Mali. I am almost certain you’d seen it in its’ summer best! Glad to know you liked the poem.