The Tree, prose by Madison Randolph at
Wilhelm Gunkel

The Tree

The Tree

written by: Madison Randolph



Voices drone on and on. I tune it all out and focus on the tree outside the window. It stands tall and mighty, filling up my vision. Each leaf seems to be lit from behind by its own light.
The way it stands there, firm in what it is and where it is. I wish I could capture the moment but I’m no artist and the light is already moving.
The bell rings and it’s time to go.
Voices drone on and on. Something about the economy. I turn to the tree. Nothing has changed. It’s still the same mighty tree. The bark looks rough and the leaves light and new. I wished I could sit high in the branches. Rest my head against the bark and relax.
The bell rings.
The voices are harsh. Something about failing. Outside the tree shakes and leaves fall. I feel the tree’s loss as if it were my own. The wind picks up and the light disappears. The tree stands strong, but it can’t move.
The bell rings.
The voices are loud. Something about summer school. Rain beats against the window and the tree is hard to see. I can hear the groaning. The strong branches bent with the wind. Wet leaves are thrown against the ground.
The bell rings.
The voices are tired now. Something about no diploma. The tree lays on its side. Its bark is scorched and black against the brown turned up ground. The jagged ends of roots point towards the gray sky. I ache deep inside for the tree. It was once so strong, but it couldn’t move.

The bell rings for the last time.

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