Paper Bark: a haiku/haibun

I remember walking through the woods with my Papaw on the first day of squirrel season, I was probably 10 or 11 years old, enjoying both the beautiful forest we were in as well as just being with my grandfather. As we went along, Papaw pointed out many different things to me, teaching me only a fraction of what this seasoned outdoorsman knew. At some point he pointed out this rather interesting tree with white bark that was peeling away in a hodgepodge manner. 

We walked over to the tree and easily pulled a piece of the bark off and handed it to me. “You what kind of tree this is?”, he asked me. “No, Papaw, I’ve never seen one before”, I answered. “That’s a paper-bark.”, he began to explain. “They call them that because their outer bark is white, thin, and peels right off, like paper …”, I’m sure there was more but that’s the part that stuck, sticks, with me. I later found out there are birch trees and they are, indeed, known as paper-barks. 

birch trees paper bark
soft white armor so fragile
no protection here

Thanks to Chèvrefeuille for today’s writing prompt for stirring this sweet memory up in my foggy old mind. 

Shame: a haiku/haibun 

It was easily the biggest Willow tree, and among the larger of all trees, in the neighborhood. As soon as I saw it gracefully swaying in the Spring breeze it grabbed my heart. I always tell folks “We bought the tree; the house came with it.”  It pains me so to see the life threatening damage – likely it’s demise – a lightning strike and subsequent damage from “pests” have caused the old tree over the past two years or so. Many days it’s lush, green canopy has provided me shade from the heat and rest during times of weariness. 

Willow tree older
than me – lightning strike shortens
Your life – such a shame

Linked to Haiku Horizons 65th weekly prompt: the word “shame” and CDHK episode #736

Willow Tree: a haiku 

This week’s prompt from Haiku Horizons is “weep”, a challenge-word that one could work in a lot of ways. In fact, last night I went through several drafts on a totally different topic with this word, which I might share later.  What I ended up with was my tree. 

Long flowing branches
Teeming with serenity 
Weeping willow tree

I’ve always loved the peaceful look of a weeping willow tree. When we were house hunting several years ago the last house we looked at, and bought, had a huge weeping willow in the back yard: I was in love. I always joke to folks that I bought the tree and the house came with it! :0)