In a Tree

The winter earth resisted as I jabbed it with a spade, intent on planting in it a seed I found in my pants pocket. I dig a hole, just inches deep—a frigid little grave—and placed in it the seed I found and covered it with dirt and snow. I didn’t think that it would grow.

A year passed and I saw something poking through the snow. Skeletal and drooping low, a sprout was growing from the place I left the seed. Bending down I saw its leaves, pale, ivory things. I thought it best to leave it there, unhindered by my nurturing hands that tend to not really be of much use in a garden.

The sapling grew for twenty years into a pale tree that bore no fruit that I could see hanging from its branches. In fact, it seemed completely dead through seemingly alive. Its leaves were but veins without any formal shape. Its branches sagged like party streamers dampened by the fog that settles in the night after a party.

No birds ever stopped to rest between its branches. No squirrels scampered round its trunk. Dogs looking for a place to lift their legs always passed it by. I saw a sky-grey cat staring at it once, but that was only once.

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