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A Forest of Hope

A Forest of Hope

The dull roar of the Pacific behind her,
Hideko Tamura Snider, has planted ginkgos,
whose leaves turn to gold in the fall;
trees that survived the dinosaurs
when an asteroid crashed into the Gulf
of Mexico–a nuclear blast when America
dropped a bomb on Hiroshima, leaving a city
of shadows–a shadow breast-feeding a baby,
a shadow sitting on a bench after a hard day.
Yet she’s gathered seeds from trees with deep
roots that protected them when ground temperatures
reached 4000°C—the Japanese call them hibakujumoku:
Hiroshima peace trees in a grove in Oregon,
she hopes will survive the sixth extinction.

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