On The Green Canopy

I felt hugely privileged to be asked by the Tandridge Jubilee committee to write a poem about the Queen’s Green Canopy – an avenue of 70 young trees bought by people in the village and planted for Her Majesty’s Platinum Jubilee. Its unveiling couldn’t have happened on a more beautiful day, with skylarks skittering overhead and a field of young broad beans in the background.

Here it is:

On The Green Canopy

It’s the year 2122.

A young child stands

Looking at an avenue of big trees

With a parent, holding hands.

Why are they in straight lines, Mummy?

Perhaps someone planted them like that.

Look – there’s a brass plaque.

A little weathered, but we can see

The names of individuals and of families.

So olden days people planted these trees, Mummy?

In 2022, it says. Their Queen’s Platinum Jubilee.

I wonder what those people were like, Mummy?

Well…

They must have been generous to each buy a tree,

They must have been sharing to leave such a legacy,

They must have understood nature as the trees thrive on this land,

They must have liked working together as no one could plant all these, single hand.

They must have been caring, nurturing them to this height,

They must have been friends with the farmers who ploughed at twilight,

And they must have liked their Queen a lot to plant for her these trees.

As we like our old King George now. How we enjoyed his Ruby Jubilee!

So you’re saying, Mummy, that 100 years ago,

The place here had friendly people, who now I know

Were generous, sharing, caring, loved all nature and their Queen?

Yes, darling, and it’s still like it has always been.

What’s this place called, Mummy?

It’s Tandridge, and it’s still green as green.

Ruth D’Alessandro June 2022

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