My Father's Ax

December 12, 2008
By Mike Fernandez, St. Peters, MO

To be honest,
I never had given too much thought about the tree
that now stands before me.

I probably never would have considered
cutting down a tree,
depriving something of its life,
no more valuable than my own.

But I have not been faced with that situation before,
and this tree stands in the way
of a new swimming pool.

According to my past,
I should remove this hindrance
before the opportunity is lost altogether
or before I change my mind.

A few years back I had the opportunity
of a promotion,
so I removed the file created by a colleague,
to ensure my position.

One time I even removed my hair
solely to win a contest.
Although it seemed worth the win,
a little handbag didn’t quite satisfy me,
but nonetheless I won.

As I begin to lose myself in thought,
I swing at the tree
not once, but twice.

My sincerity grips me
as I stare into the gashes
created by my own hands

Remnants of this once wholesome tree
drift to my feet.
Perhaps its leaves were too old and dry
for comfort, so it cast them away.

Time passes,
and my sincerity subsides
due to the agony of indecision

Here I stand,
with my father’s ax
as I give one more moment of thought.

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