The Ancient Beech


The ancient beech was born in fire,

And married twice to priestly kings.

Its bark was burnt and deeply scarred.

Its leaves poured light and raised the earth.


The mast around was stained with blood,

And matted thick with offered hair.

A thousand years the beech had grown,

It touched the sun and stroked the moon.


Its roots had spread beyond the wood,

Beneath the charcoal burner’s house,

Beneath the gardens, streets and towns,

And out beneath the mythless world.


The ancient beech was lost to truth:

Was married twice, and twice forgot.

19 Comments to “The Ancient Beech”

  1. This is lovely. “The ancient beech was born in fire” – so striking. Love your closing lines so much!

  2. beautiful and frightening, ancient as stories told in the dark around fire born trees.

  3. Magical… I love trees. Your imagery is amazing.

  4. You have told the story of this tree very well! Written beautifully.

  5. There is a God jealous of the trees. He forbid worship in the groves, but keeps one Himself protected by a flaming sword.

  6. the first line hooked me straight away. 🙂

  7. intriguing poem.loved the contrast between an almost cosmic beech and our mythless world.but with such poems as these, we aren’t really that mythless, are we?

  8. that’s the hope Abin, guess that’s what keeps us writing! Thanks muchly.

  9. very cool mythic poem!

  10. I really enjoyed this poem. I speaks of mythology, and deforestation and the connection between man and trees.

  11. I really enjoyed reading this. It took me away to fantasy yet it speak of reality’s truth. Sad. But your writing is excellent.

  12. Beautiful write–I enjoyed the sense of mythology in this piece–and trees are a favorite subject of mine–

  13. the beech, humanity, mistakes and retakes. you cover a lot of ground here, prodding your reader to consider underlying meanings and ultimate truths. imagery is exceptional.

  14. This hooked me in at the very first line and I was not disappointed. You told the tree’s story well!

  15. An ancient mythical feel to this ode to a beech, or as they say ‘life’s a beech’ ; )

  16. Out beneath the mythless world… I love that. Also “It touched the sun and stroked the moon.” It leaves me a bit breathless.

  17. it touched the sun and stroked the moon wonderful line

  18. This transports to another time when the natural world held sway. I love it.

  19. The beech seemed to spread its own myth, even if nothing noticed. Great, timeless tone.

    And, per usual, outstanding lilt.

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