Sunday, January 15, 2012

Timber Cruising

Online, the assessor tax parcels divide crop and timberland
and both rest beneath snow that finally comes,
the hawk hunting pasture bemoans hidden vole
cannot rest watchful eye
for winter brings hunger to many and the tax man waits
so buyer and I cruise the timber looking for lumber trees.

Looking now satellite image so clear, there the veneer tree
red elm dead and leaning towards; "best take it now" the biased advice
while anyone can see twenty years of prime lie ahead
(or twenty years from now a nursing home bill due instead of taxes)
if dead tree felled with wedge and line instead.

That lucky 1% growing straight and strong thinking their doing giving un-interrupted sun.

The 99% scratching and clawing to get a share, sending a wayward,reaching branch.
A lumber tree.

The timber buyer's critical eye needing a kant straight enough to saw
two faces clear enough so those edge trees beckon us inbetween.
not knowing the sun enriched growth has sealed their fate
for neither veneer nor scrub they will suffice.

At end lumber trees there are aplenty.99% of trees can be sacrificed.
Can of spray paint. Can of pepper spray.
The trees know now which side I'm on, which master I serve
Money for the tax man, for the man
as the county distributes food at the pantry
and we all look for the sun to return, hawk eyed.

Phil Specht on Jan 15, 2012

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