Saturday, March 31, 2012

Raison D'être?

Because they are splendid 
Windbreakers, cypresses ring cemeteries— 
But that’s not the only reason 
They take our breath away.


  1. True also of this, in several senses.

  2. At times, I think how incomplete the landscape round here would be without these sentinels interspersed amongst olive grove after olive grove; indeed, it's the olives' perfect counterpart.

    Up until 50 years ago, it was also used extensively in the building trades as flooring and roofing timber.

  3. Yes, I can see they would make good company.

    Once in another lifetime we lived by the ocean on an exposed point of land with a stand of cypresses as shelter against the incoming weather, often fierce in storms. Over the years they had bent together away from the dominant prevailing westerlies, and this had affected their pattern of growth; but unlike the taller trees that did not bend with the strongest gusts, they never fell. And so with time the whole stand had taken on an inclined configuration, as if stooping. Sometimes nature finds it wiser to give way for a time, so as to go on. Better bent than broken.

  4. You might be familiar with this but here's Seferis on another hardy specimen: “As pines keep the shape of the wind even when the wind has fled and is no longer there, so words guard the shape of man even when man has fled and is no longer there.”--better bent than broken, indeed!


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