Green
…the leaping greenly spirits of trees…
e.e. cummings

Green is the truest color.
It does not lift its eyes too high.
It does not hate like red, nor rage
with orange
nor put on purple’s kingly pretense,
nor like cerulean make promises
it cannot keep.

It has a pulse
like a spring swelling, spilling
over moss-covered stones,
or a tree
planted alongside waters,
grown wise in wisdom’s way;
it does not boast

but knows
green is not the last word;
there will be urgent warnings,
red and orange,
before the nights of ice and brown,
when gray winds growl it bare of truths.
They roil away.

And, too, it knows
a calm slow turning toward morning
on the leeward side of fury,
—not yet but when?—
deep inside the heartwood darkness
there births another green, still furled,
waiting to be true.

 

About the Poet:  Paul Hooker is a native Southerner, a Presbyterian minister, and a member of the faculty of Austin Presbyterian Theological Seminary. Raised in Nashville and Birmingham, he holds degrees from the University of Tennessee (BA), Union Presbyterian Seminary (DMin), and Emory University (PhD). He has served as pastor to congregations in Kingsport, TN and Atlanta, GA, and as an Executive Presbyter in Jacksonville, FL. In addition to writing poetry, he plays jazz bass guitar; both activities speak to his yearning l to create beauty. He is a husband, father, and grandfather.

 

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