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By Sandy Ackers
The tiny tree we planted on the front lawn this spring
turned blood red overnight.
Branches shoot towards the house,
little flames licking our front door.
Leaves thrash in the wind,
their movement and color reminding me
of my husband's blood moving through the dialysis machine,
that looks so much like a Slurpee machine
churning out cherry drinks,
except it's really cleaning all his blood
so he can live for another two days.
We planted the tree in May,
entranced with its light green leaves,
soft like baby skin,
its slender trunk shooting up out of the earth.
It was the first thing we planted together.
Now the air has turned cold,
the nights long.
When I looked out the window this morning I saw
the leaves had toughened, darkened.
Soon they'll crumble and fall to the ground,
only trunk and branches remaining,
a skeleton reminder throughout the long winter
of the tree we planted last May.
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Document last modified on: 01/06/2007