This one is by the English 20th century poet Philip Larkin, whom David Orr of NPR quite aptly described as a “master of the minor key.” In keeping with my own spring obsession with budding, blooming trees – and the occasional melancholy of spring – I give you…The Trees.
The trees are coming into leaf
Like something almost being said;
The recent buds relax and spread,
Their greenness is a kind of grief.
Is it that they are born again
And we grow old? No, they die too,
Their yearly trick of looking new
Is written down in rings of grain.
Yet still the unresting castles thresh
In fullgrown thickness every May.
Last year is dead, they seem to say,
Begin afresh, afresh, afresh.