The other day Mr Stoatie called me at work to say that they were cutting the third and last remaining lime tree down outside the pub. In the summer we used to walk the dogs over and sit and have a drink under these trees. In fact it got to be such a regular jaunt, that Charlie still turns in there every time we go past!
The trees were easily 70ft high and although they had rather thin canopies as a group they looked great. My daughter tells me that they were brought down because they were dangerous (my arse!) It will be interesting to see what they do with the space. I get so depressed when these lovely mature trees are taken down, I have no confidence that anything planted now will be left to get to a decent size at all. I have visions of roads in future being flanked by 20ft cherries, paper birches and other approved ‘amenity’ trees. Anything ancient will be in a special tree preserve with hazard tape and fences round it. My only consolation is that I think nature will get the last laugh eventually.
Anyway in honour of my friends The Limes, my favourite tree poem, by John Wright.
Let the trees be consulted
before you take any action
Every time you breathe in
Thank a tree
Let tree roots crack parking lots
at the world bank headquarters
Let loggers be Druids
specially trained and rewarded
to sacrifice trees at auspicious times.
Let carpenters be master artisans
Let lumber be treasured like gold
Let chainsaws be played like saxophones
Let soldiers on maneuvers plant trees
Give police and criminals
a shovel and a thousand seedlings
Let businessmen carry pocketfuls of acorns
Let newlyweds honeymoon in the woods
Walk don’t drive
Stop reading newspapers
Stop writing poetry
Squat under a tree
and tell stories.