For you are ancient and withstand terrible weathers.
For you make a dark shape in winter, carry a nest.
For I saw you sheathed in frozen snow, your berries hoar.
For you grow on the crest of a slope.
For you are potent, with medicinal properties.
Wands made from you hold great power.
For in spring you are covered in white blossom.
For you are the May tree and shake confetti on the girls,
who dance around your trunk.
For you are most erotic and bless love and fertility.
For you teem with life, insects that fly and crawl, lichen
and every kind of bird wants to shelter in your branches.
For you fill with the hum of bees.
For you must never be broken, nor taken home,
For you are hope, which remains wild.
For you have thorns and red berries, which imbue meaning,
though children make itching powder, babies are fed your syrup.
For you offer protection.
For you are grizzled and grow low to the ground.
poem and photograph Rose Cook