The man in the hard hat said
Your bark split years ago
And let in the rain
Which turned your heart black

I was once insulted on your behalf
When a grocery bag
Got tangled in your hair
But I never learned your name.
Were you “Beech”? “Poplar”?
We should have talked more.

Your dying gesture
Was to come to my window
And rap on the glass, saying
“Death is one ‘s self split in half.”

A white headstone marks your time on earth.
With you gone, my studio receives more light.
Thank you for the illumination.