Once two kids came near.
A boy and a girl.
The boy told the girl to cover her eyes.
He bent down and broke a flower from near my base.
He held his hands forward and told her to look.
She did. She smiled. He smiled.
The boy took her hand in his and ran off. Far from my sight.
I smiled. Happy, I returned to my work.
They came often. I didn’t mind. I enjoyed their company.
They sat under my shade, the girl braiding her hair and the boy playing his melody.
And I, swinging in the gentle breeze under the sunny sky.
Together we would have a great time.
Time passed. They grew up, almost as if under my shade.
Once, they brought a knife. Then the boy carved their names onto me.
There was pain. But the pain was overpowered by happiness.
I was theirs's. They were mine. We were each other's.
Then came the day. They sat under my shade. The two of them.
The girl said she had a surprise for him. I already knew what the surprise was.
I could feel the third one. The little one. Heart beating with all its force.
The boy burst into tears.
Happy, we all were.
Many days they did not arrive. I worried.
Then, they appeared, smiling, with the little one in her arms.
They giggled, rocking the baby in their arms. I stood there. Watching.
Time passed. The infant became a toddler. The age of when his parents had met me.
He played around me. But I could sense a sadness in the air. The father was not there.
Only the mother stood there. Watching. A tear playing at the edge of her eyes.
I felt the earth shake. The heat of the days was dry. But the mother and child came.
Then, one day, men in sharp dresses came. The mother, close behind them.
There was a box in their hands. Wrapped in a flag.
The air that day was heavy. The wind, wet, signaling a storm.
Time passed. The boy grew up. The mother grew old.
They came here. Everyday.
The child playing and talking to his father.
The mother, crying silently.
They left that day and did not come back.
Many years later. A person came. The boy, now a man. In a suit.
He came with his mother. I was happy to see them.
“So long have you been far!” I thought.
But then I noticed. She was in a box.
A box not wrapped in a flag.
Men in ragged clothes came and laid her beside him.
And the boy watched from afar, looking at his wristwatch often.
When all became quiet, he came near to both of them.
He stood silent. Then a ring broke the silence. He received it.
Then he walked away.
He never came back.
It was bittersweet. They passed. But they were together.
We were together.
They came after me but left before me.
As usual, I watched and swayed in the breeze under a sunny sky.
I stood there.
A witness to an unbroken love. A witness, whom no one listens to.
A testimony to a lifetime. A lifetime lived by them and shared with me.
I stood there for a century.