My Childhood was a Willow Tree.
1: My childhood was a willow tree,
The skies were sapphire blue,
A brook meandered down below
With zephyrs drifting through.
2: We’d dance in circles holding hands,
We’d wander two by two,
Through palaces of dreams, that one day soon
Would all come true.
3: But childhood passed as childhoods must,
And sapphire skies grew pale
The willow shed its gentle leaves,
The breeze grew to a gale.
4: And then the firm but gentle touch
Of hands which clasped our own
Now slipped aside and stayed apart
And then we walked alone.
5: Alone, no reassuring touch
Of hands around our own
At first our dreams began to fade
And soon they all had flown.
6: And with no dreams our nights were blank
But days were dreary too
Without our dreams we had no hopes
Of glories to pursue.
7: I still recalled my final dream,
My hands were clasped once more,
While up above the northern lights
Swirled into night-time’s shore.
8: I loved my family, loved my friends,
But I could not remain.
I knew if I could find this place
Our dreams might come again.
9: I got up early one clear dawn,
And took my coat and pack,
Left home and marched towards the hills
And never once looked back.
10: I used the sun to guide my way,
I kept it on my right,
And when the sky turned into dark
I used the stars by night.
11: Sometimes I’d find a place to stop,
But found no hand to take,
No northern lights among the stars,
In dreams or wide awake.
12: And then the path came to an end,
With boulders shaped like fists,
I paused for night, to clear my thoughts.
But dawn brought only mists.
13: No trail ahead, no trail behind,
No sun to guide myself.
I couldn’t stay, nor turn around,
So I climbed the fist-shaped shelf.
14: Beyond it was another rock,
I climbed up that one too,
And then I climbed a dozen more,
And still there was no view.
15: The mist grew thicker hour by hour,
The rocks did disappear,
And then a voice said, “Who are you?”
And I fainted down in fear.
16: I floated in a pleasant place
I thought that I had died
But then I felt two gentle hands
That clasped mine either side.
17: I opened up my weary eyes
I floated in a lake
Of water warm, where creatures strange
My longing hands did take.
18: And here I dreamed most wondrous dreams,
Of violet, gold, and red,
The present, future, and the past,
All swirled around my head.
19: Then at midnight all at once
The heavy fog dispersed
And green and purple waves of light
Among the stars did burst.
20: And then I knew that all these dreams
Were meant for more than me.
I had to take them to my land
For all my friends to see.
21: With heavy heart I bid farewell
And left this strange terrain
My path once lost now seemed quite clear.
I found my home again.
22: And there my friends still danced alone,
With never a nightly dream
And so I built a tub of oak
And filled it from our stream.
23: I warmed the water with smooth rocks
The steam rose up in strands
And then invited one and all
To sit there holding hands.
24: We swam and bobbed, and I reached out
My hand with tender touch
And then a friend reached back to me
With firm but gentle clutch.
25: Soon we dozed, and far above
The green and golden light
Slipped quietly past the wandering stars
And filled us with delight.
26: And then we woke to sapphire skies
And willow trees in leaf
And gentle zephyrs wafting through
A babbling brook beneath.
27: And once a year, midsummer’s eve,
I’d travel on the paths.
To find my strange friends of the rocks,
Relaxing in their bath.
28: And there I’d sit and hold their hands
And gaze up through the mist
And marvel at the northern lights
Pirouetting through the stars.