Across the United States there are hundreds and thousands of trees that have stood around for many centuries and bore witness to the history in that area.
Witness trees have been known to hide bullets they’ve absorbed beneath new layers of wood and bark, and they heal other visible scars over time. While they may look like ordinary trees, they have incredible stories to tell.
Eight hundred seasons, warmth and cold,
Resting and renewal and shedding of leaves and more rest,
It's been a fruitful life so far,
Reaching down deep,
Basking and drinking and taking in nourishment.
My thoughts are slower than the flowing creek's,
But faster than the rocks' inside it.
I do things in my own time.
Birds come to visit,
Stay awhile, raise young,
Sing songs, sleep, sing again.
Small creatures tickle up and down the trunk,
Come and go in a flash.
Don't blink, you'll miss them.
Only the sun is constant, only the soil and water below.
Everything else is fleeting to me.
Once, yesterday was it
Or the day before?
There was a great noise.
The air was loud, and busy.
Humans all over the place,
Shouting, hurling things,
It was over in a few seconds.
I felt a sting. Something
Got inside, like
A borer, only quick and hard.
It must have died.
It didn't do me any harm, and
I soon grew over it.
The seasons have been good so far,
Sun, rain, and snow.
I expect to go on for quite a while longer.