Old Bunhill Fields Burial Ground

Photo of Bunhill Fields burial ground by GrindtXX on commons.wikimedia.org

What’s left of George Fox
is somewhere nearby.
Maybe his flesh fed the tree
whose leaves form a dome
of sheltering green
in the City of London.

I sang songs about Fox
in First Day School,
as did my parents
and their parents before them.
Generations of Barkers flowing
from the fertile ground of England
up the trunk and through the limbs.

I see faces in the gnarled wood,
my predecessors striving for air:
nonconformists, free-thinkers,
dissenters, Friends.

I would climb this tree,
take my place among the thousand
leaves sprouting from high branches
furthest from the earth
yet utterly dependent
upon it for life.

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