Early this autumn morning,
with the air full of birdsong,
and the meadow striped with golden light,
I gather bucket, spade, pliers, wire,
and walk into the young wood,
to work as caretaker to the trees.
Saplings still, they require protection
since deer and rabbits love to gnaw
and nibble the tender bark.
They will need water on board.
Winter's months of pale light and
chilling winds is fast approaching.
The work is tedious, but not difficult.
I have wrapped their trunks and
set a double cage about them.
Each gets a deep drink and good words.
If wishing makes it so, they will live.
My hope is: in fifteen years
they will be twenty feet tall,
dappling the ground with shade,
giving us fruit and nuts, a quiet space
in which to walk and think and be.
This is my morning chapel,
kneeling upon the earth,
caring for tree and flower,
setting out food for cats and birds,
readying the garden.
I defy you to say this is not holy work:
the breeze a gentle blessing,
the dew cool upon my feet,
the hymns of a thousand birds
ringing in my ears.