Thirteen Springs

Thirteen Springs
By Marilyn Buck (1997)
had you planted a tree
to fi ll in the deep well
of my absence
that tree
would be
thirteen springs high
high enough to relieve
the relentless sun of incarceration
strong enough to bear
the weight of children
who might have been born
had i not been seized
acid washed crypt
of perpetual loss
and high-wired vigilance
but there is no tree
that stands in my place
to harbor birds
and changing winds
perhaps someone will plant a willow
a eucalyptus
or even a redwood
any tree that will
from your life and plunged into
this
in thirteen years more
bear fruit
and provide
shelter