The arborvitae, bent and broken both,
that you cut four feet up
has grown green and friendly,
a place for the sparrows to pause
a small stage for chipmunks
to look into our house
to watch me write their portraits.
You have – always have had –
the strength to save by giving up
to sacrifice what cannot be saved
making healthy what was sick
or setting it – whatever it was –
to its final resting.
In that wisdom of the scythe
of the chainsaw or the rock
grows a mind beyond my reach
a strength beyond my grasp –
it is the foundation and shelter
of my peace in this world.