the Poplars

"These memories were left here with the trees"  ~ Jo Harjo 

They say we should never go back. The urge to recapture is something of a fool’s quest, for nothing remains just as it always was. Even the bible warns against the backward glance as full of salty tears, enough to fill a pillar. But there is where fragments of you are left, your footsteps, our fractions of time. Crumbs of connection to feed upon.

And so I took the train again and the riverside path to the plantation. Beyond the gate, geometric alleys of poplar and a fully foliated forest. Long gone the spindly saplings we had lain beneath, watching seeds soar through clear skies, in slow, frothy swarms. These memories were left here with the trees. Now there’s a clear-cut timeline in their fattened trunks and the quivering leaves sound a soft lament for my witnessing alone.

Merrill asks us to write, in not more than 144 words, some prose to include the given line of poetry from Jo Harjo, for Monday’s Prosery: Memories with the Trees