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A-Tangled-World

Hello.
My name is Oak.
And if you didn’t already guess, I am a tree.
I’ve heard rumors of trees that grow delicious fruit,
Of trees that bloom exotic flowers,
Or even trees that are so tall that it seems they can see the whole world.
It must be nice having a purpose.
I don’t have anything special about me.
Just your typical, everyday tree.

I live in the backyard of a small house.
People rarely go in and out.
I keep to myself.
I don’t mind, really.
I’m used to being alone.
Years ago, I wasn’t alone.
I had a beautiful friend named Marigold living right next to me.
I don’t like to think about her.
When the snow came, she passed.
Now I don’t have friends.

Seasons passed,
The grass grew,
And eventually,
The people moved away.
I didn’t really mind.
It wasn’t that different.
It’s just life.

I watched the sun.
Up and down and up and down.
Time passed.
I stood.
Waiting.
For what? I don’t know.
But soon, I found out.
A new family moved in.
They trimmed my branches,
They cut the grass,
And best of all,
They brought new life.

A flower sprouted next to me.
Her name was Rose.
We talk.
She reminds me of Marigold.
And sometimes the other trees join in too.
There’s this tree I like.
Birch is his name.
He makes Rose laugh.
I laugh too.
And realize how long it’s been since I laughed.

But time passes.
Leaves fall.
Snow coats the ground,
Coating Rose too.
I shouldn’t ever have made her my friend.
I care too much.
And,
Well,
I think you understand.

The snow has coated my branches.
This is the coldest winter I’ve ever been through.

Birch tries to make me laugh.
I try to laugh,
But I can’t.

But the world moves on,
Winter passes,
Snow melts.
Spring takes over,
Bringing new life.
I take a deep breath.
“Rose?” I say, “You’re back?”
“I never left,” she says.

Seasons pass.
I notice all the birds chirping,
The bees buzzing,
I sleep.

I wake up to a rustling.
I see small children climbing me.
I wish I could shake them off.
But then I realize,
That I could have a purpose.
Soon I go back to sleep.
But I am woken up by a loud chirping.
I look in my highest branch
And see a mother bird feeding her young.
I look down and see worms burrowing through my roots,
And even a young man using my shade to read.

You see, I’ve heard rumors of trees that grow delicious fruit,
Of trees that bloom exotic flowers,
Or even trees that are so tall that it seems they can see the whole world.
And I have a purpose too.
People climb me,
They use my shade,
I am a home,
And best of all,
I am a friend.

Now, I stand up a little bit straighter,
A little bit taller,
I never knew how much there was to see.
Of course, I never really looked.

Graham TerBeek
Graham TerBeek, 10
Towson, MD

Elodie Weinzierl
Elodie Weinzierl, 11
Waban, MA