“Dissolution is that Bent Tree Culled from the Hillside”
Paying attention to the narrator of a poem is difficult sometimes, because poetry demands a certain perspective. My mother was diagnosed with a serious cancer many years ago. Surgeries and chemo and checkups lay before us. There were late night talks and early morning insomnias. She stayed heroic throughout. She claimed a steadfast resolve and held onto it. I wrote quite a bit over those years. Some of my writing, from my perspective, didn’t quite touch on the subject matter of her pain or fear. Instead it dwelled in a place of my personal sorrow. That never felt appropriate. She, after all, was enduring the indignity of it all. One night, a vague memory of when I was very young of my parents talking about trees behind the house surfaced. My father died some years before my mother’s diagnosis, but I realized he too had a voice in all of it. We share our lives briefly with each other. We don’t always get to say what we need to say, and often the mundane parts of our lives are great metaphors for all the things we wish we could say.