• Vol. 02
  • Chapter 08
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Tree Zoo

Resin scented air, and I’m among turpentine.
Steeped in light, walking through groves
where the possible rises slowly. Across this
forest, we walked freely, in our disinfected boots.

Oaks grazed quietly in their enclosure
within wobbly-leafed reach of the significant
silvered masts of the eucalypts:
the swamp gum, snow gum, fuzzy gum,

peppermint, stringybark. Standing close
to their kin, fenced off from infinite conifers.
We passed empty pens, scenes of failed
transplantation. I noticed the height, the perfect

verticularity of so much that grows, how it
points straight at the sky; at right angles
to its roots and layered branches. Some limbs
were ribboned with bright plastic, as if the foresters

had made wishes. In corners scrabbled
the wild and weird: a blot of flowering quince.
Soft new leaves overlapped, green-deepened
as soor plooms. A Serbian spruce dreamed of home.