I THINK that I shall never see

A poem lovely as a tree.

A tree whose hungry mouth is prest

Against the sweet earth’s 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.

famous poem by Joyce Kilmer, 1886–1918

A friend called about an earth-gifted tree in her front garden that she wanted removed. She wanted to know if I wanted the tree or if there was somewhere else to plant it. To honor and be a symbol of our continued prayer for the Japanese people, it got planted in a boggy area of my yard. Nearby the area is a laurel oak, a salt bush, eucalyptus tree, and a couple paw paw trees.

The tree’s name is Atlantic White-Cedar, Chamaecyparis thyoides; Family of Cupressaceae or the great cypress trees. Its global presence is confined to a narrow ribbon of freshwater wetlands along the Atlantic coast of United States, from Maine to Florida. In Florida, one of its growing companions is the laurel oak. Beginning life at last 25,000 years ago in North Carolina where large stands were harvested for its strong, rot-resistant characteristics. Today, North Carolina is planning to restore the swamp land by planting thousands of this valuable tree.

The photo of the tree above is the Atlantic White Cedar over looking a lake. Although my tree is not yet a year old, it’s destined to grow 80 feet high, 20 feet wide and known to get there, some say 12 inches per year. Below is a photo of my new tree with the Laurel Oak’s branches shown above.

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