To The Oldest Tree In Europe (first letter)

They say you’re the Fortingall Yew.  It could be true if Scotland is actually European.
You must know (in a manner that continues to elude human detection or understanding) how much you’ve changed over the past three or four thousand years.  You’re not what you used to be.  You don’t even resemble those first written descriptions from the eighteenth century.
Do you remember when your trunk was 16 metres round?  Do you remember anything?  How did it feel (and how did you feel) as you slowly split into multiple selves?
Maybe I’ve seen you on TV (long before knowing what you were). Perhaps you’ve been tucked into the pastoral scenery of a cosy mystery.  You might be an integral part of some windswept, sheep-addled British landscape, inhabited by alcoholic city detectives, muddied Wellingtons and widowed prime suspects full of madness and eccentric allure.
 
You’ve probably been pissed on.  You’ve probably been pissed on hundreds of thousands of times.
People started speaking to one another under your branches (after centuries of frustrated grunting).  You’ve felt them dance on your roots (each and every short-lived generation).  Do you ever wish you’d fallen before the fences sprung up everywhere — before the church reformulated your significance?
That wall was built around you as a means of protection.  The animals and forest were left to fend for themselves and didn’t know it.  They’d persisted without knowledge before ceasing to exist.
There’s no reason to doubt your privileged position.  Reason has nothing to do with it.

 

jeremy