Norway Maples, Spring

These boughs, flushed new in April air,
Have never looked more fresh or fair,
Proclaiming hope unhinged from harm—
A triumph etched in every arm.

Yet last July still sears my mind:
For weeks, a drought and heat combined,
Singeing leaves on every limb;
Insulting summer’s gentle stems!

Their pretty purples browned and fell,
Littering the ground pell-mell—
And nothing I, a friend, might do
Could help these maples muddle through.

To April’s eyes, such thoughts much seem
The efflux of a bitter dream—
Except that dried stems, here and there,
Rise now by lush ones—wholly bare.

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