Monday, December 22, 2008

A Lumbering Holiday Tale

the year is cold and worn,
the sun appears in Capricorn.
Spinning planet circles sun.
Winter's season has begun.
Wind and rain and sometimes snow
make us wish for fire's glow.
We hope that it is not too late
to clean our house and decorate.

We scrub and rub until we're sore --
we must have cleaned an hour (or more) --
Then drive out in the morning light
to get a tree with dynamite!
We travel on a country road;
we've packed up an explosive load.

The farm
which sells folks Christmas trees
Charges us with extra fees:
We have to promise to be good
before we can blow up some wood.
The tree farmer is nice but stern
and tells us when it is our turn,
"Leave your driver's license, mate, or
we wont give you a detonator."

We leave our ID and depart.
Riding in a draft horse cart
The driver and the people with us
share their stories about Christmas.
This farm is better, we tell them,
than dealing with the BLM.
We're here! The horses stop and steam.
We've come upon a winter dream!

Firs and pine trees everywhere;
explosives scent the alpine air.
Rows of trees, and craters, too
(which indicate where trees once grew).
We sing songs with great aplomb,
like "We Three Kings" and "Tanen-bomb."
Here's a blue spruce -- it's too prickly;
there's a brown tree, kind of sickly.
Here's a doug fir -- way too droopy.
And madrone is much too loopy.
Here's a crater; there's a hole
where someone bagged their woodlot goal.
Will we find the perfect one?
Perhaps the good trees are all gone.
No tree to take back on our car?

Oh Horror!
And we'd come so far!

But wait! It's here! The perfect tree!
And it will blow up beautifully!
The dynamite goes 'neath the roots
(we relocate bugs, mice, and newts).
The blasting caps and wires are set.
This blast will be the best, I bet.

The final countdown has begun:

Six five
three two & one!
Blam! The tree is in the air;
its flaming roots are like a flare.
The pyrotechnics sure are bright
and brings to mind the fiery sight
Of birthday candles on a cake
(or poetry by William Blake).

Its impulse spent, it arcs to rest.
We're sure that this year's tree's the best.
The farmhands help to douse the fire
and wrap the tree in bailing wire.
The tree is measured and we pay
for our explosive, fun-filled day.

We drive back on the country road
glad to have our Christmas load;
But kind of sad, too, in a way --
we'd like to do this every day,
But we'll have to wait a year at least, or --
okay -- there's always eggs at Easter.


If this poem has offended
Then think on this -- And all is mended.
only trees which were molested:
paper where these words have guested.
The players are a poet's whim;
Likewise their actions here within.

Real fools and louts who sin
real nitroglycerin
learn the lesson far too late --
After they disintegrate --
That high explosives' power unfurl'd
Can erase us from this world.

My tale's a Christmas fantasy:
Do not harm trees with TNT --
Unless your antics are confined
Within the borders of your mind.
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