A New Jersey poet

(National Poetry Month, Day 25)

I’m slightly embarrassed to admit that when I hear “Joyce Kilmer,” the first thing that comes to mind is the Joyce Kilmer Service Area on the NJ Turnpike—because at this stop is the closest Roy Rogers to my home!

However, Joyce Kilmer was famous in the first place for other reasons—perhaps most notably for his poem “Trees.” It’s short and sweet, yet evocative and profound. As the leaves emerge over the next few days, think of this poem!

Trees
by Joyce Kilmer

I think that I shall never see
A poem as lovely as a tree.

A tree whose hungry mouth is prest
Against the earth’s sweet flowing breast;

A tree that looks at God all day,
And lifts her leafy arms to pray;

A tree that may in Summer wear
A nest of robins in her hair;

Upon whose bosom snow has lain;
Who intimately lives with rain.

Poems are made by fools like me,
But only God can make a tree.

dogwood and fir and sun

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