I see the apple tree. It’s dark-gray and brown, ridged bark, with Y-shaped branches splitting upward like outstretched arms from its knotted trunk. Its leaves fill every branch. The 2 x 4 Dad and I nailed onto the trunk below the split, so Frankie could plant his foot to climb it.
I see him in it. And us playing tag in the backyard using this apple tree as a base. I hear his laughter and shouts as I tickle him while he stands between the branches.
I don’t see another apple tree in a small yard next to a concrete patio. One with a similar, Y-shaped split branch growing from a similar knotted trunk. One that also possessed a full canopy, and up which I climbed and played with Dean and other friends.
robin songs an unflowered apple tree awaits autumn
first published in Image Curve, September 20, 2018
Photo by Kai Dörner
for dVerse Poets’ Open Link Night #228 (pubtended by Mish)