I wrote a version of this some time ago, but with the coming of spring, I wanted to revise it. I also read a poem by the Turkish poet Nizam Hikmat about old men reasserting their being alive by planting trees. Hey, that’s me!
Little seedlings of tomatoes and pepper are popping up
And my heart beats just a little faster.
Spring puts a new spring in my step.
I sometimes think that my “springtime self” is a separate personality
It brings back memories of being excited to see trees and flowers pop up and blossom,
And now that I am getting older, springtime feels like that again,
But perhaps more acutely so.
It is the re-emergence of life,
And the reassertion of my being alive and the joy that it brings.
Why not share that joy with nature?
Why not share that joy in nature?
And birds’ songs waken the sleeping boy in me.
So, I want to plant trees and vines,
And imagine the taste of the fruit they yield.
I am planning to plant even more fruit trees.
“Why,” you may well ask, “is an old man planting trees?”
The unspoken is, “Hey, the trees will outlast you.”
There are any number of reasons.
First, I like trees and I like fruit.
Inshallah, I will be eating at least some of the fruit from the trees,
Maybe make some jam that the little ones will get on their faces.
Perhaps make some wine to gladden the hearts of those I love.
Adam and Eve had the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil
I have the Tree of the Knowledge of mortality, a much bigger deal.
And when the leaves return to that tree,
I know that my mortality is postponed,
Just long enough to make me experience the joy of my childhood.
At least for me, as I know all about good and evil.
It will make the transition from my backyard paradise to
The (in caps) Paradise less drastic
And when I look down and see a kid eating a peach from my tree
I will feel like I did something that lasts.
And sweetens the lives of others.