A Talk to the Willow

When you were caught red-rooted in the drain
You wept of course, but did the same again
Not a year later. Look me in the eyes
And do not bother to pretend surprise.
Recall the second time the drainer came
And summon, if you can, some sense of shame.
The case was clear. ‘Want my advice?’ said he,
Folding the cheque – ‘You’d best take out the tree.’
You heard, or did not hear? It’s hard to tell.
But the next spring, as I remember well,
You spurted such a torrent of pure charm
As might excuse Beelzebub from harm,
Such waterfalls of soft bewitching green
As never in our garden had been seen
In any previous year.

    Well now, attend.
Assume your spirit wishes to amend
But thirst is strong, I will not be judgmental
Or ask too much of passions elemental.
There is a history (let us wear no blinkers)
You come of a long line of heavy drinkers.
Therefore your restless roots shall be confined
By a deep trench, with plastic sheeting lined.
You shall be watered well, to ease temptation,
So can we hope for your cooperation?
Though to the pure, they say, all things are pure,
Please try to keep your thoughts out of the sewer.

Richard’s choice

Poems of Nature