Longleaf Stories

full circle in the hundred acre wood


Where my imaginary line

Bends square in woods, an iron spine

And pile of real rocks have been founded.

Where these are driven in and piled,

One tree, by being deeply wounded,

Has been impressed as Witness Tree

And made commit to memory

My proof of being not unbounded.

Thus truth’s established and borne out.

Though circumstanced with dark and doubt —

Though by a world of doubt surrounded.

–from A Witness Tree by Robert Frost

My own Witness Tree is the huge, aged live oak just inside our gate. It has begun to drop limbs and I worry it has grown tired. I fret, too, that the stormwater that comes into our gate at the curve from the county road may be weakening the magnificent giant’s root system. Buck and I, along with our adjacent neighbor, are donating right-of-way for the county to put in a drainage structure to solve the problem. It is moving forward, but so slowly molasses could harden into rock before work begins. Well. Folks will be back at work tomorrow and I’ll call them all again.


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