From Ancient Greek mythology the beautiful Dryads hail -
Mysterious, gentle, woodland nymphs, their presence did prevail
Over woodland places, forest floors, especially old oak trees.
“Love and protect our woodlands,” were their oft repeated pleas.
The Dryads weren’t immortal, like the trees for which they cared.
Their lives were tied up closely with the trees whose lives they shared.
The King of Thessaly once thought he’d like to build a hall
And little cared at all about the trees that soon would fall.
His men looked round and chanced upon a sacred grove of trees.
“Ah, just what we’ve been looking for. We’ll fell a few of these.”
"Cut them down” the King told them with very little thought,
But as the axe cut through the oak he heard a voice, distraught.
“Please stop” the voice cried feebly as they cut the bleeding bark.
“You’re striking at this mighty oak, and also at my heart.”
The oak had stood for many years within this sacred wood
But the men continued chopping for the king had said they should.
The selfish king cared little that the woodland nymph was dead.
The prospects of his handsome hall filled up his mind instead.
He little knew that Mother Earth, great goddess of the grain,
Had learned the tree had fallen and the little Dryad slain.
She said: “I’ll make him suffer! He’ll pay dearly for this deed!
As he so likes the selfish life, he’ll feed and feed and feed!”
He couldn’t stop his hunger pangs no matter what he tried.
He became so fat he couldn’t move and then of course he died.
Selfish folk on earth should always look before they leap.
Good Mother Earth’s just resting. She’s not in her bed asleep!
“Please don’t destroy your lovely world,” is Mother Earth’s advice,
“For if you do, this time for sure, you all will pay the price.”
Copyright on all my poems
Please do read this article: Tree Felling Do you know that you can contact your Council (in the UK) and have a preservation order put on a tree and the council tree-men will care for the trees. We have three large woodland trees in our garden and they are protected. We cannot even remove a branch without the permission of the council. One tree had to be taken down and replaced when it rotted inside, and it is the tree that now features in my poem: The Amazing Golden Tree. It is a whitebeam and a beautiful tree, cousin to sycamores. So do take care of the trees in your lives. Josie