Many of us have a favourite tree. It may be one we remember from childhood – a tree we loved to climb in or swing from or hide behind. Or perhaps it’s one of the ancient and majestic yews or oaks that stand sentinel in churchyards and on village greens, hardly seeming to change as the human years hurry by.
This beautiful selection celebrates the glory and mystery of all manner of trees – from David Constantine’s apple tree clothed in frost to Alistair Elliot’s birch waving its ‘delicate hair’ in the breeze.
“I’m thankful to the trees outside my window” says Moniza Alvi at the beginning of her quietly rhapsodic poem of the same name. This is tree-love of the everyday kind – the simple pleasure of looking out on a garden from which familiar trees look back. We can almost imagine they’re keeping us company.
Poems by Moniza Alvi, Paul Batchelor, David Constantine, Alistair Elliot, Gerard Manley Hopkins, DH Lawrence, Kim Moore, Louisa Rhodes, Ruby Robinson and Edward Thomas.
Cover illustration by Richard Shimell.