Today on the phone, I remind my sister
of the stories we made up about the tree

now gone from our mother's front yard.
The old cherry tree, black branches

in early spring, wet bark of morning,
white blossoms in dramatic mist.

Our family loved that tree. We recognized the trunk
as a trait in ourselves, strong, but rough.

The delicate branches with small red
fruit, the bounty of patience.

My sister imagined a fairy who sprinkles
blossoms that transform us into princesses.

My story : an old sage tells us that in order
to inherit riches, we must become the gnarly bark.

Now she says,"Yours was very Wabi Sabi."
"True," I say. "Blossoms like snow will perish."