Monday, February 25, 2013

The Palm


There stands the regal palm tree
Its use is more than I can see.
It wears a crown but gives no shade
and never a bit of fruit is made.

“Regal” is an apt description
The tree, the king, share this affliction
One is useless as the other
Each an embarrassment and a bother.

California in my youth
Sported palm trees, it’s the truth
But the ones I knew there
Wore edible fruit in their hair.
The date palm, a tree utile,
Its production was not futile.

On Oahu I met the coconut,
A palm tree too, similar but
at least it produced a bread
that if it fell not on your head
was edible, a thing of joy,
I’ve eaten them since a boy.

Yet this thing I see above me
Is useless as food or shade. A tree?
What is this tall thing for?
Why, my friend, it is d├ęcor!

8 comments:

Shelly said...

Loved this poem! It is a spot on description-

Vee said...

It does have an important role. Everyone enjoys beauty. No everyone likes coconut.

Grace said...

I didn't know there were different kinds of palm trees - well, okay I knew there were date palms and coconut palms - I love both - the fruit anyway. Coconut palms are a tad dangerous - you don't want to park your car near them after all...Now I have to research palm trees (like I have time for this ... wait, I do, after I get the laundry done...)

vanilla said...

Shelly, thank you. I see these all around me, but clearly the utility is in the appearance. (Then what about the ones whose dead fronds are allowed to hang? eeek!)

Vee, yes, as I said, "it is decor."

vanilla said...

Grace, many years ago I stayed on Oahu in a cottage that had a terne roof and an overhanging coconut palm.
Believe me, one sat straight up in bed when a fruit fell on the roof in the middle of the night!

Lin said...

I'm with Grace--I didn't realize there were different palms. Well, I guess I have an excuse being that we don't have them here in Chicago!

Secondary Roads said...

Around this time of year, I tend to remember the joy of living where palm trees thrive. But here I am stuck in a snow drift. Oh well.

vanilla said...

Chuck, whether or not the palm is productive, there is something to be said for the climate that will support it! Sixty-mile winds today, though.