Circa 1960

Its inviting canopy
a tunnel even on the brightest days,
in small town America
circa 1960, Elm Street was always
a resplendent jewel,
with branches embracing overhead.
While vice-like ice
would easily snap maple and pine,
straight-line winds
twist and uproot hemlock and oak,
the magnificent elm
thrived in the face of such adversity.
Yet by decade’s end,
like some Founding Father honored
on a street sign,
only that ghostly name remained.
The last of its shade
doomed not by a sharpened axe,
but an infected beetle.

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