Pascale Petit’s ‘The Treekeeper’s Tale’

Pascale Petit’s fourth collection, The Treekeeper’s Tale (Seren, 2008), will be launched at The Gallery at Foyles, Charing Cross Road, London, on Tuesday, 18 November at 18h30, with Carol Rumens’ Blind Spots

Admission is free and, if you’re lucky enough to be in London for the launch, you are cordially invited to attend. 
RSVP: or 01656 663018.

The Treekeeper’s Tale may be ordered online at Seren, Amazon and Kalahari.

The Treekeeper’s Tale
Pascale Petit

I have set up house in the hollow trunk of a giant redwood.
My bed is a mat of pine needles. Cones drop their spirals

on my face as I sleep. I have the usual flying dreams.
But all I know when I wake is that this bark is my vessel

as I hurtle through space. Once, I was rocked in a cradle
carved from a coast redwood, its lullabies were my coracle.

I searched for that singing grove and became its guardian.
There are days when the wind plays each tree

like a new instrument in the forest-orchestra.
On wild nights mine is a flute. After years of solitude

I have started to hear its song. I lie staring at the stars
until the growth rings enclose me in hoops –

choirs of concentric colours, as if my tree is remembering
the music of the spheres. And I almost remember speaking

my first word, how it flew out of my mouth like a dove.
I have forgotten how another of my kind sounds.


5 thoughts on “Pascale Petit’s ‘The Treekeeper’s Tale’

  1. johemmant

    Hey, thanks for the tip-off. I will try to get there, though that’s a bad time for me. I just finished reading The Huntress, which is astonishingly powerful. The treekeeper’s tale is gorgeous; she makes me want to explore my surreal side *grin*.

  2. Michelle Post author

    I’m glad you’ve enjoyed the poem; I’d like to buy all Pascale’s collections. Jo, if you can get to the launch on Tuesday the 18th, I think it’ll really be worth your while. I agree with you, Christine, it’s enchanting.

  3. Susan Richardson

    I wish I could make the launch but can’t get to London on that day. I’m looking forward to buying the collection though. I keep returning to ‘The Zoo Father’ again and again and again…

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