Poem: Not a Redwood

Redwood forest

Not a Redwood

I’m real as a redwood tree,
powerful and still.
Men orbit and disappear
while I wait, rich with life,
draped in mist and light,
blood as thick as sap,
speaking in the only voice I have.

You sit beneath my boughs.
You say, “I don’t even know
what happiness means anymore.”
“How” – you say – “did i get to be this age
and still alone?”

See my scars and roots
and reaching for the sun.
You are not alone.

I’m not a redwood;
that’s only how it seems.
In fact I am a man –
and when will you understand
that you carry the key
to my evergreen heart?

* * *

Wael Abdelgawad
January 18, 2015
Fresno, California