What can YOU say in six sentences?
The owners of the Georgian-style mansion up the road from me – the one that has the carnival-sized displays on Halloween – have planted young elms along their drive. Rather, their hired men planted them, balled and burlapped, disobeying the cardinal rule on the calendar of tree culture, which is never in summer.
I did roll down my window when I passed them lowering the saplings into their holes, and I questioned the wisdom of sentencing trees to death – especially elms, which had a rough go of it in the last century – but the men did not speak English.
I drive past every morning and evening, watching the elms struggle in the glare and heat of summer. Their trunks are pale and straight like bones, and the green of their leaves grows more tepid every day.
It’s not as if I can rush into their yard and rescue the elms the way one does an abused dog, and yet I imagine organizing a posse with pickup trucks who will creep up the driveway on a moonless night and coax the trees (maybe by reading poems) to come away with us to cooler climes.