Poem of the Week: “I’m Super Fucking Emotional About Trees”

A Poem Tapping Into Climate Anxiety

  • Graphic Breea Kobernick

“I’m Super Fucking Emotional About Trees”

I was born and raised in New Jersey
Not Jersey Shore Jersey
But Sopranos Jersey
Up and out in the mountains
Where you’re either tree or cell tower
Farm or parking lot
And it’s green
Deep, dark, ever-green
And as green as it is it’s grey
Park-ways and winding river roads and school buildings made of grey
Made to house hundreds? Thousands? Millions?
New Jersey is the most densely populated state in the U.S.
We don’t get the luxury of aloneness
We don’t understand the concept of “no neighbors around for miles”
We live and breathe and eat and sleep on top of each other
And we die on top of each other
My father likes to remind us that New Jersey is ground zero for rising temperatures and sea levels in the U.S.
I like to remind him that I don’t want to hear it
Because I already do hear it
Constantly in my head
I dream of drowning and I’m afraid of fire
Razing forests
Turning green to grey
My childhood is all trees
One big forest
And the anxiety isn’t really new
When I was five, my neighbors cut down one of the trees in their yard
I sobbed all day
I told my mother that tree was my friend
And when the chainsaw bit into its bark
I could feel it
Every time I visit home there’s less trees

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