Sequoia Cathedral

gentle giants
the tree, the Sequoia.

Wait here
for a thousand years!
Ha! A joke?
They live twice as long.

Raise your eyes
touch its bark
in their shadow
stand belittled,
a mote.

Oh ancient one,
what have you seen
in your centuries?
Silent witness,
traveller from the past,
you have endured
when others fell.

show me your scars.
A year is just a fleeting beat,
you measure time by the cataclysm.
Raging tempest of searing heat.
Cruel death!
to those of blood, and lesser wood.
You wince, but you remain.

sings the peace
of the interlude . . .

The rhythm of your life
is like the cadence of the surf–
crash of angry foam,
gentle repose between.
Wash away!
those that cannot stand.

Who remains? for the future
but the tree,
the Sequoia!

— Sequoia Cathedral —

Drawings, poems & music 1986 David Erskine
Oakland, California

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