When Great Trees Fall – Maya Angelou

June 10, 2014

When great trees fall,
rocks on distant hills shudder,
lions hunker down
in tall grasses,
and even elephants
lumber after safety.

When great trees fall
in forests,
small things recoil into silence,
their senses
eroded beyond fear.

When great souls die,
the air around us becomes
light, rare, sterile.
We breathe, briefly.
Our eyes, briefly,
see with
a hurtful clarity.
Our memory, suddenly sharpened,
gnaws on kind words
promised walks
never taken.

Great souls die and
our reality, bound to
them, takes leave of us.
Our souls,
dependent upon their
now shrink, wizened.
Our minds, formed
and informed by their
fall away.
We are not so much maddened
as reduced to the unutterable ignorance
of dark, cold

And when great souls die,
after a period peace blooms,
slowly and always
irregularly. Spaces fill
with a kind of
soothing electric vibration.
Our senses, restored, never
to be the same, whisper to us.
They existed. They existed.
We can be. Be and be
better. For they existed.” 

When Great Trees Fall

There seems to be many great trees falling at the moment, from the wonderful lady who wrote this, Maya Angelou, the comedian and actor Rik Mayall, and a dear friend’s husband. They all leave behind a wonderful legacies and anyone who had the privilege of knowing them were truly blessed.

  • Alison Turnnidge June 10, 2014 at 9:16 am

    Beautiful words which bought tears to my eyes

  • Jenny June 10, 2014 at 2:10 pm

    Bizarrely you clearly had exactly the same thoughts as me this morning…. xx

  • Jane English June 11, 2014 at 4:59 am

    Lovely words, was shocked to hear about her death, then Rik Mayall’s. Sorry for your loss to. x

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