James Graham, Becoming a Tree
Becoming a Tree
Also: at Amazon
Length: 85 pages
ISBN: 978 1784625 443
Review: Alison McBain, Becoming a Tree
From the Author’s Note
I would hope that every poem in this book is from the heart. In this sense: that everything I have written about is what the Greek stoics called oikeion, ‘homely’, belonging to me, welcomed by me and given a place in my heart. Of course this includes the people I have loved. It includes also many people and areas of experience well beyond my own time and place.
Most of the poems at the beginning of the book are drawn out of memory - especially of my now distant childhood. Of these, the title poem ‘Becoming a Tree’ represents what seems to me the first time I allowed imagination to do its work.
We then begin to reach out into the world and into the past. I ‘become’, or try to become, the people who made the cave-paintings of Lascaux, people in the slums of the so-called ‘developing world’, the Chilean miners trapped underground. All these are oikeion, and I hope the reader will make them as welcome as I do.
From ‘Becoming a Tree’
There was a child went forth every day,
I nearly became a tree. Already a squirrel,
From ‘The Book of Lascaux’
When we speak of them,we have to say
From ‘Listening to Maria Callas’
My neighbour’s van growls by
Copyright © 2016 by James Graham