Roots assimilating upwards
into a trunk,
bulging & contorting
like the first time we made love—
whatever that means.
Bark abrasive & smooth,
rough but harmless,
like the taste of your name on my tongue:
pungent as cinchona
though the memories are sweet as
the eucalyptus sap I was.
Up your trunk to all your branches;
my hands, your watery lifeblood
caressing your chest and limbs yielding
explosions: beads of sweat on your brow
& below your clavicle—
A youthful and naïve display.
The tree, too, remembers youth.
By growing malignant knots in its vascular cambium,
displayed in scars of black and white
& sagging roots at its base
above & beneath the dirt.
We, too, remember that summer
by our burgeoning distance
& the bitterness now between us.
Yet the tree still grows.
Were you and I not watered?