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Dan Speers

Citizen Poet
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For Christopher Cail on His Birthday
Christopher is the son of Rita Ferrandino who has been a friend of ours for almost 20 years.
I wrote this poem for him for his 12th birthday which was Sunday, May 29th, 2011.

A Warning to Boys Who Climb Trees

                 by Dan Speers


As I was climbing up a tree,

I think the tree was watching me

As if to say,” Young man, take care,

“This is my home and I live here.”

I saw the tree shaking its leaves,

But then it could have been the breeze.

I thought I heard the tree creak sharp,

But then it could have been the bark.

I think a branch caused a misstep,

But too far out I may have crept.

Did a twig made a snatch at me?

Well, I wasn’t climbing safely,

“Hey, tree,” I said, “you can’t stop me,”

“I’ll climb to your top; then you’ll see

“That I am stronger than a tree.”

Up I climbed, hand over limb, high,

Until I almost reached the sky.

What happened next I cannot say,

But something weird transpired that day.

Did a gnarly branch make my foot slip,

Or tree goo make me loose my grip?

And falling to ground from the tree,

I think I heard the tree laugh at me,

Cause I heard these words as I went splat,

“I am the tree but you’re the sap.”

Christopher with his mother, Rita, on left, and Carol at a New Hampshire ski lodge.
The moose, of course, is stuffed. Had a big dinner.