Love Grows Like a Melon Tree

In my role as literary executor of the late Bob Hay, I’ve been going through a bank box of notebooks.  I’ve been thinking of publishing a selection of his poetry, especially the short pieces, with some of his sketches as illustrations.

Here are three poems from a larger work called ‘Love of Loneliness’, which has a lot of poems about trees:

Plea for Free Trees

Money doesn’t grow on trees;
Love grows on People
I love you.
That’s the truth!
Truth grows everywhere;
It tells us nothing
We can’t believe
“Trees never lie,” they said,
“Unless they are dead.”

See, I would have said “unless they fall over.” Some dead trees are still standing and therefore do not “lie”.  But my poetic license was revoked years ago.


Close to you, bare,
I hug your trunk
Since you care

This is my favorite. It shows the impishness that pops up once in a while in Bob’s poetry:

Love Grows Like a Melon Tree

Love grows like a melon tree
Fat and long and tall and free
W’ take a walk by the melon patch
Lie so low down in the thatch
They just look like trees to me

Here are some of Bob’s sketches:

Bob loved antigues, especially chairs.
An antique settle
An antique settle — not a settee!
When we came upon pieces like this at barn sales, Bob would explain what each one was used for.
City house
Bob loved old houses, too.
Bob would point out how houses trace the history of the families that owned them, with each generation adding on to the old.