By Kristen Roberts
The council come to prune the pears they planted
beneath the power lines, two trucks
spilling workers and tools in practiced formation.
There’s no induction to the procedure, no ceremony;
they simply sever those limbs
whose leaves brush steel in insurrection,
whose growth affronts the parallel rows
with asymmetry and misdirection,
whose bark and blossom and artless verdancy
could never articulate the noise and violence
that attends their gentle verge,
and thrust them at the bezeled maw of the chipper.
It’s easy to misplace the source of the screaming,
and impossible to ignore the grotesque posing
of this ballet of the broken and abused.
When the trucks leave there will be no stillness
and silence will not fall; a ponderous hush
will rise like steam from the asphalt,
and a breeze will lead a procession of leaves to the street
in impotent protest that will sound for days to come.
This poem is a public submission created for Red Room Poetry's New Shoots digital poetry anthology.