Wednesday, 11 January 2017

Out With The Old





Christmas or November - 2015 - a phone call came. The casual branch dropping of our dead ash tree had been acknowledged as a danger; it was scheduled for demolition. Storms came, the tree surgeon was busy.
We become accustomed to vigilance at the garden’s end. No one loiters in the road there. We drag the droppage to the hedge, to rot down into good soil.
January 2017 - another phone call. Tree surgeon and crane are booked, the landlord says.
Uh-huh.
It may storm yet, we say, we’ll see.
But we park the car out by a field gate - you never can be sure.

The crane is amazing. It straddles the road, reaches to the sky. Up goes the man in the yellow mesh box. Chainsaw whirs. Bit by bit, down drops our dissected tree.

Dear Fat Trunked Ash, we have loved your silhouette. We have loved to run and startle off a coat of starlings. Loved to see Old Crow sat, stark black on bare branch. We witnessed the last of your leaves falling, looked for buds that didn’t bloom, changed your name.
Dear Dead Ash, we have our near-miss stories. Favourite photographs of you, looming, a full moon caught in your dry twigs.
We have this amazement at the power and skill required to bring your bulk to the ground.
We have wood to sort.

Blurry, the next morning, from the window, check we are not dreaming.
A new view from this garden’s edge.