Trees – Loving Them To Pieces

You have all no doubt read passionate debates on the moral dimensions of giving your kids toy guns. Today I witnessed a moral equivalent, and all the same questions passed through my mind: I was walking in the Houston Arboretum and Nature Center (one of my favorite spots on the planet) when I encountered a woman with two young boys, each wearing a plastic helmet and each carrying… I am not making this up… a plastic toy CHAINSAW! Hence the following new movie:

The Texas Chainsaw Toy Story

George Washington, the story goes
(As myths go, few can match it)
Did fell a tree with mighty blows
To test his brand new hatchet.

The tale says Georgie told no lie,
Confessing to his deed.
And neither, my good friends, do I:
I says just what I seed!

These kiddies walk the woods with Mom,
They put no tent or hut up;
They bear no arms, they throw no bomb,
But they’re equipped to cut up!

“No guns,” their mother states her rule:
“However much you hate your
Annoying classmates in your school…
Unleash that hate on Nature!”

Of good advice, Mom has no lack
For laddies such as these:
“Say no to guns; say no to crack…
Say yes to whacking trees.”

I know which way this thing will run
(Though I am not omniscient):
Someday, they’ll hack like Washington…
Though vastly more efficient!

– The Yellow Doggerelist

(November 1999)

Copyright © 1999 Stephen S. Bates

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