“Tree,” by Stratis Haviaras

ryangpdPoems0 Comments

A prose poem I re-discovered this morning, by my good friend the poet and novelist Stratis Haviaras.

I will take this chair apart and build a tree with it. I will stick new leaves on it, new nests new birds new insects. The sun will brush against its exquisite limbs; winds will blow to test it; the rain, surprised, will arrive to praise it: When did this–last time I–amazing!

This is no dream of mine, but a chair’s. I sat to rest but fell asleep in a chair that still remembers. And now I want to wake up….Before the woodman comes around the second time.

Aside from the sheer and strange beauty of this imagining, the definite article in the last phrase chills my heart. Not “a” second time, with its comfortable possibility of non-occurrence, but “the” second time. With its certainty.

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