The Tree Near The Wall

By candlelight and sunlight they come

To the Viet-Nam Memorial —

America’s Wailing Wall.

I am the tree, and I see it all.

They bring roses, photographs,

pieces of string, or ribbons.

There are medals left on the ground

by old men whose memories put faces

To the names etched in the stone.

Names some of us knew as father, brother, uncle, son.

And I see it all!

Some bring trumpets and

their cries shake my leaves.

Like them, my roots tremble.

I would move from this place

if I were free

of my earthly bonds.

But I stand here —

at the ledge of the Wall…

at the edge of the world.

                                                             I must see it all!