That Japanese maple (purchased 1991, K-Mart, gallon-can, $2.57)
has been cultivated into a lissome, not quite exquisite bonsai.
But it thrives in miniature, mimicking the seasons flawlessly:
like the cool, reflective waters of a hushed and silent pond.

Trimmed, fertilized, repotted at (I’ll admit) less-than-ideal intervals
this demur maple’s foliage flushes scarlet in November,
each old and dying leaf a vibrant and new autumn flower;
every spring—silent-steady-miraculous—new green life unfurls.

With the girth of a tapering pool cue, the height of a toddler,
this maple’s quaint stature and symmetry eases, calms and
insulates me from the tyranny of cellphone and family,
the bland frustrations of life, the tragic idiocy of politics and war.
A slender refuge; my silent companion.

About the Author: Rob Loughran has been cultivating bonsai and writing poetry since before Hawaii and Alaska were states. Well, almost …



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