Poetry Marathon poem #11

No burns,
no foul.
Pain isn’t
a cutoff
it is
a lesson
of
another err,
of Experience’s
mentorship
though the
gnarled figure
before me
is too bent
near genderless
to age.
More so tree
than human,
the rootpiece
he leans upon
resembling
an extension
of his timeworn
Self.
He is training
me for his seat,
his eyes are bright
with laughter and love
which sometimes
confuses
me.
As the harsh bite of wind
chills me,
I find the
crisp cold air
hard to breathe
and it is unpleasant.
He chides
in his customary
singsong manner
of speech:

I should not feel
the cold
I should not feel
the
wind,
I say first,
but one should always look,
he responds.

He chuckles,
clearing the air.

He goes no further,
stopping to admire
the snow
that slowly kills us
forming on a branch
listening to the patter
of softly falling needles
arranged in patterns
from the apex.
I can see vague shapes,
dueling creatures,
skittering along the upper
branches
playing or fighting
I can’t tell
and, ultimately,
it doesn’t matter.

He looks at me,
as if studying
my thoughts,

I know,
young one,
very well
your state
of mind,
so similar to mine
when I stood
where you stand,
so long ago-

don’t laugh,
even I was
a child
on the cusp
of imagination’s
magnificence
at one time.

I was young.

he looked wistfully
at a passing cloud
and smiled.

I was taught
to appreciate
the beauty,

he only says
this once.

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