Silver pencils shining
through stark, gnarled elm branches
- the birches keep their grip on life

Reaching, straining,
their fingers stretch
towards the blanket grey sky of
a cold late winter day.

Dark and foreboding, prickly holly
clumps, protectively,
like pawns guarding the hierarchy
in a game of chess.

Through it all, a fringe
of sun bleached grass blows wildly,
warding off predators
who might trample the sleeping life beneath.


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