Sunday, January 19, 2014

The Salix Babylonica

                                                                                               Attribution:  Oroussei
Image: The catkins of the weeping willow flowers which are
dioecious where the male and female are on separate trees (here)

An air of sadness and outright dejection
Drooping nonchalantly in throes of laziness
Taking the slightly moving light breeze
Not wanting to indicate urgency of any kind
That is the picture etched very often

But from a distance a contrasting sight of welcome
Air of relaxation flowing leisurely in the breeze
Such is the attraction of the weeping willow
Very much commonly seen benefiting landscapes
Around those of pools lagoons and brooks
Where water source provides the lifeline
And often used to advantage to strengthen
Water control and preventing the river
Banks from being washed away easily

Mindful though water looks beautiful above
But treacherous root formation below can cause
Untold damage if planted next to drains and
Water pipes as propensity for water is an attraction
To its desire to cause blockages of roots appearing
Innocently from below the ground.

Grown from cuttings easily rooted in an instant
Apparently the choice of getting the base of 
the best charcoal and the supple twigs are easy
on basket weavers.

Its versatility of uses matching
its beauty of appearance

Written for Bjorn's hosting at d"Verse: Under
the canopy with Poetics on - trees! and shared
with Poets United's Poetry Pantry #185


  1. I love the look of willows.. But like many of their close relatives it can grow a little bit too much.. Willow baskets are one of my favorite handicrafts..

  2. Willows are special, a safe haven in the storms of life. Nicely done

  3. nice...there is a very pretty willow not too far from my home...its a rather huge tree...and the big snaky veil that droops...def have to keep and eye on the tree roots...they will wreck your foundation or your pipes...

  4. Beautiful portrayal. Willows are special - in many ways.

  5. Fine paean to the willow and how its biology challenges our aesthetics.

  6. A nice description of the Willow. It sounds way better than what you'd read in an encyclopedia.

  7. I've always loved these trees, except when limbs used as whips for punishment by some. thanks for sharing

  8. you words enhance the willow Hank...a nice contrast to the colorless descriptions you find elsewhere...

  9. oh yes, the roots can be so invasive...

    "from a distance a contrasting sight of welcome"

    so true and so well expressed here.

  10. ..i am envious as i don't think they grow here in Philippines... but your piece is factful & a delight to read, Hank... loved this! smiles...

  11. Ah the willow my tree of heart..well I would like a willow basket that I could
    fill with my dreams.

  12. what a beautiful ode to the willow....didn't know they could do so much harm to water pipes but yes, makes sense....they're beautiful and always a bit melancholic looking trees... i would love to paint one now...

    1. Please do Claudia. I always look forward to your water colors! Great!


  13. I like Willows. They serve us well except when their roots decide to go through our pipes. Nice write Hank.

  14. Not many willows in my area, true rare beauty. Nice poem. :)

  15. beautiful imagery... i've always admired weeping willows.

  16. The weeping willow is one of my favourites........since have captured its beauty well here.

  17. Nice ode to willow. I like the idea to look both: close view and at distance to see the benefits and possible harm...

  18. The willow tree is sure one to behold, captured everything in the verse told

  19. I like willows too. They seem both strong and vulnerable, and sad you are right.

  20. I really enjoyed the way you described willows, Hank!

  21. Wonderful evocation of the two sides of the willow--protection and destruction--as well as its beauty. Thank you.

  22. I love your view of the willow, so inviting from a distance and lazy up close while its roots both prevent erosion and tangle the pipes. One I climbed on as a child broke into our sewer--and i need not tell you of the smell!

  23. a wonderful ode to the weeping willow....

  24. informative and well formed, both, Hank ~

  25. Expressions in words are so intriguing but it is true