It’s unsettling to see a tree upended,

roots exposed like nerves

torn from the heart of the earth,

or the trunk of a 30 foot pitch pine

cracked in half—

you can almost hear

the aching series of splits,

the tree bending in high winds

until the strain grows too great

and the core splinters.

And the branches strewn about

like lost limbs that echo 

Grendal’s pathetic cries,

Boewulf’s triumphant shouts.

We could use him now

to wrestle heat itself,

 pin wind to the mat,

and subdue the seas.

We’ll need heroic help

to change our fate.

Was it he who said:

Fate often serves an undoomed man

if his courage is good?

We could use some courage now

when trees snap like matchsticks in hurricane winds

and the ocean, from whence we came,

seeks revenge for what we’ve done.


Ed Meek’s poems have recently appeared in Aurorean, The Paddock, Connecticut River Review, Ekphrastic, New Southerner, and American Poetry Journal. Other poems are forthcoming in Constellations and The Kerf. Ed writes reviews for The Arts Fuse. His most recent books include Luck (Tailwinds Press) and Spy Pond (Prolific Press).