Saturday, March 25, 2006

Dad's cherry tree sonnet

It's great to have relatives who will create content! This is one of my dad's first published poems, a sonnet on cherry trees that he recently sent me in response to my failure to take pictures of the tree outside my office window.

Who could believe . . .
Who could believe a cherry tree; its thin
Lines cracked against the glaze of winter sky
As if all hope had fallen leaf by leaf
And curled and died, leaving where life had been
Silent appeal, uplifted, cold and dry,
A black and twisted diagram of death:
Could work a miracle of sun and earth
And bring the glory in its arms to birth:
Could cast a haze of silver on the night
And cloud the eye with bursting cry of joy,
Soften the wind with drift of falling rain:
Could fall, and in its graceful fall of light
Leaf the green branches to fulfill the void:
Could show belief and truth are one again.

--C.L. Webber, first published in Japan Christian Quarterly, 1971

2 comments:

Masha said...

love it. i love the poems of our relatives. i have several of my grandfather's poems around the house -- some illustrated with photos of my kids, some illustrated with his own drawings. here's one, sentimental but sweet:

The Unfinished Prayer

"Now I lay me down to sleep"

From where she kneels at mother's knee

"I pray the Lord my soul to keep"

Her baby voice floats in to me

"If I should die before I wake"

She lisps it, slow and drowsily.

"I pray the Lord..." Another's voice

As mother prompts her tenderly.

I listen for her to repeat,

She sleeps. Her prayer is incomplete.

A rustling seems to fill the air

As though the angels, flitting by,

Were taking her unfinished prayer,

A gem, to God who sits on high.

Libby said...

thanks for this, Masha!