Once long long ago
Stood a strong cherry blossom
A thousand years past;

On a landscape vast
We loved and it was endless
Eons of descendents

Basked in its essense
We met here and fell in love
Like a gift from above

White skin like a dove
Almond eyes painted red lips
A kiss on your hips

Promised not to give
Love to another’s soft lips
As long as we lived

I needed to leave
Breathe and face my own demons
We were in a war

Our land war torn
A war I didn’t believe in
But sick of bleeding

Again seasons past
But the cherry blossom stood
Hoped you understood

Promised I’d be back
But unaware that my path
Would have me so trapped

First stationed between
Brunei and the Philippines
I saw you in dreams

Saw the horriffic
Years in the south pacific
The Lord my witness

We fought in battles
I saw soldiers lie trampled
My thoughts lay scrambled

I held on to you
Dirt on my face blood soaked through
My life fought for you

Five years dragged on by
I’ll never forget those times
Hope was on my mind

I came back alone
You weren’t waiting for me
I went to our tree

I saw you sitting
My heart and soul so willing
A tear no forgiving

You were there with him
Saw you laugh like it was me
Turning suddenly

You saw me and fell
Like a ghost is how I felt
Five years slowly melt

And my sole reason
For breathing, for believing
Withered like seasons

No sea this stormy
No flowers to adorn me
No time to worry

And still it stands; For
trees know nothing of glory
End of the story


This poem is an extended haiku full of conflict. man vs himself, man vs man, man vs. woman…. Here I wanted to show the struggle that is found in human nature. Fighting in wars and fighting the inner battle within ourselves. I also wanted to depict the struggle between holding on and letting go in a relationship and show how the same relationship can be different to two different people (we’ve all been in love with a person or have someone be in love with us to an unequal degree)

But more importantly I wanted to show the conflicts between man and things he cannot control….
man vs nature, time vs nature, and importantly love vs. nature.

I wanted to contrast the lives of 2 beautiful things, Man and Nature (cherry blossom) with respect to time. Men live once so they invest so much into something meant to last, namely LOVE. Here the Cherry blossom takes its usual symbolism of feminine beauty.
However, The cherry blossom knows its flowers are not meant to last so it sheds them every year to regrow new ones. Cherry blossoms here symbolizes nature/mortality (cherry blossoms have quick blooms and deaths).

So, in the end man is heartbroken and betrayed by everything he thinks he knows because he invests so much into love, but nature already know the fickleness of time so its adapted to constantly blooming and losing its flowers each season. The poem seems to end with nature prevailing over man because the man has lost so much… or so it seems.

That’s why I ended the poem with this haiku…. “And still it stands; For trees know nothing of glory End of the story”
Because trees can’t FEEL LOVE the same way that humans do, so they don’t know or understand the EMOTION AND FEELINGS that men have in love and in life. That’s why the trees stand longer but don’t REALLY live fuller lives…

appreciate all your comments and favorites !!! much love shoaib

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