Y GOEDEN GRINOLÎNTHE CRINOLINE TREE
Menna Elfyntrans. Nigel Jenkins
Dadwreiddio yw hanes rhyfeloedd.
Bechgyn bochgoch ar aelwydydd,
gloyw, yn heidio i dir estron.

Ac ymysg yr holl ddadwreiddio,
anghofiwn am y sigo syml
ar golfenni'r plwy. Tocio clust,

un plwc ar aelod, a dyna’i ddiwedd
neu ei ddechreuad. A'r brigyn
amddifad yn ysbail yn llaw’r hawliwr.

Un prynhawn o Fai, ces fy nhywys
i waelod gardd fy modryb, ac wele
nid wylo coeden oedd yno. Un yn piffian

chwerthin, â’i chorun tua'r awyr;
cig ei dannedd yn weflog tua'r gwynt,
yn binc crinolîn, ei bysedd yn binwydd
mor feddal â hirflew ci'n heneiddio.

'Y gwr ddaeth â hi nôl o'r rhyfel.'
meddai, 'ac fe gydiodd yn berffaith.'
O'r diffaith, un goeden rhwng dwy wlad

yn croesffrwythlonni. Fel petai'n symbol
fod gwreiddio dyn wrth ddynwared
bysedd y Garddwr yn ddyfnach ei bridd,
rywsut, na’r glas mewn dilead.
Uprooting is at the heart of war:
rose-cheeked lads from cheery hearths
herded off to foreign lands.

And in all the uprooting, the buds
nipped, we seem to forget the sheer
convulsion of the parish’s tree.

One member plucked and that’s its end,
or its beginning, the twig cast adrift
as spoil in the despoiler’s hand.

One May aftemoon, my aunt led me
to the bottom of her garden, there to behold
a tree not weeping so much as chuckling,

her laughter sailing from crown to sky,
the meat of her teeth wide to the wind,
crinoline pink, her pine-green fingers
as soft as the hairs of an ageing dog.

'The men brought her back from the war,'
she said, 'like a dream, out of all that waste,
she took two countries, one tree.'

Cross-fertilisation: earthly echo
of the Gardener’s touch, symbolic in kind
of man’s enrootings making somehow for deeper soil
than blue, cold, destructive steel.

Copyright © Menna Elfyn 2001; Trans. Copyright © Nigel Jenkins 2001 - publ. Bloodaxe Books


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