Saturday, October 25, 2014

Billy The Tree

Billy the Tree

Billy the tree aces his SATs at Forest High and ends up with a full college scholarship. The day arrives for him to move halfway across the state. The older trees wish him luck, and they make him promise to write. They wave and cheer as he packs his trunk and leaves.

He arrives at his college and after a few days of partying with humans he decides that he never wants to see his boring old forest again.

The first letter arrives from home and he ignores it. He trims his leaves into a rough approximation of a human hairstyle. Another letter arrives and goes on the pile. He buys low-slung jeans and an Abercrombie hoodie. Another letter arrives. Billy spends half his savings on an Xbox and practices Call of Duty and Madden in order to better fit in. Another letter. Billy takes up smoking, despite the dangers.

He feels a little weak and notices that his leaves are browning at the edges, but he puts it down to all the Jaeger and cheap beer.

A few other trees in class try to talk to him but he ignores them in favor of his exciting new human friends. He laughs at their bird's nests and old tire swings and their lousy topiary. He makes it clear that he wants nothing to do with them.

But Billy feels tired all the time! His leaves start to fall off. His knots ache and his branches begin to twist in on themselves. His bark feels loose and starts to slough off at the slightest touch. He's dry, tinder dry. He drops a cigarette and damn near burns his twig-and-berries off. His human friends have no idea how to help and abandon him in his dorm.

After a few days he's little more than a dry, cracked trunk surrounded by kindling and rotting bark. His roommate brings his mail and dumps it on his desk. He reaches out and opens his latest letter from home.

"Billy," it says, "YOU'VE FORGOTTEN YOUR ROOTS!"

No comments:

Post a Comment