Flash Fiction

DIARY OF A TREE

by

Jade Green


Seasons pass and my arms move closer to the sky, though still not close enough to touch the stars. From their canopy they twinkle at me and I am firm in my belief that one day we will be united. For now, though, I concentrate my efforts on the pavement, scattering my spores and observing the comings and goings of the humans as they continue to multiply.

Sometimes I wonder if they intend to be so erratic, so flighty. Since they implanted me on this street 325 seasons ago, I have witnessed their love, their chaos, their insolence. During the hot season men with loud orange machines come to attack my appendages. The buildings rise around me and at times I see faces pressed to the glass panes against which my fingers often brush. I try waving at the faces, but they don’t appear to see me. Poison spews from the cars passing below. My outer layer continuously sheds and reforms to rid itself of toxins, but the poison is unrelenting. For six seasons a small human shows her appreciation for me by touching my trunk each time she passes. But then she is gone. Another human, staggering in a zigzag when the stars are high and the street is empty, uses my trunk as a toilet before collapsing at its base in a jumbled heap.

And through all this I continue to scatter and peel. Soon I can see over the tops of the nearby towers, and one day in the distance, I notice a crest of green and gold lit by the fiery glow of God. My neighbouring sister tells me this is a ‘Forest’, where our roots reach deep and our manes grow wild and we are boundless. In this place, I am almost certain, the sky is within reach; the wind carries my hopeful whispers to the crest and I await their answer.

While waiting, I pretend I am there, standing proud alongside my Forest brothers and sisters as we sway our arms in the midnight breeze and hold out our hands to cradle the stars.


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