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Page 56

I, too, prefer to look at trees,
whole ones (but roots unseen)
rather than pulped tree flesh,
watered, bleached, sized, pressed, dried,
snipped into convenient white rectangles,
some black or blue liquid dabbled over them,
to be absorbed in curved and kinked patterns.

But trees must be sacrificed
for this partial proof of God's existence,
for look you (as they used to say),
look you: A tree fell in the forest,
perhaps with no one there to hear,
then became this paper, upon which
this writing (by-passing your ears,
going from your eyes direct to where
you create the voices in which
you converse eternally, all other
unreal voices merely grace notes
to your music) becomes a voice speaking
to you -- right now I am speaking to you --

and that is the sound of the tree
falling in the forest, one distant
ripple of it, and you are here
to hear.

Note: The first line (apart from being a dim echo of Marianne Moore's poem "Poetry", which begins "I too dislike it") refers, perhaps, to the suggestion that it would be a good thing to look for a long time at a blank sheet of paper. I, too, would rather look at trees than at these wood-pulped tree products.

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