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The Student Voice of Forest Hills Central

The Central Trend

The Student Voice of Forest Hills Central

The Central Trend

The Student Voice of Forest Hills Central

The Central Trend

Musings of a pessimistic idealist: the weeping willows

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The sapling wept.

The trees that stood around it grew with it as it grew with them, started to inch away. What once seemed to be centuries-deep roots unearthed themselves  and crawled before the sapling’s eyes. Or, it seemed that this all happened within the span of the past day. Rather, this is what had always been. 

It was only now that the sapling noticed the distance that had grown between it and the forest. It was only now that the sapling more than realized that the sapling accepted and willingly acknowledged. And acknowledge it did. 

The poor thing wailed and wept into the hollow abyss of each passing night. Its shrill notes pierced each growth of bark, only to be met by the uncaring caws of ravenous, black crows. In the morning, the birds chirped with delight, buzzing with gossip of the sad occurrence. The birds, with all of the cries they had heard but with only the cries they had heard, assumed what the sapling cried to be true—that the surrounding woods, growing tall with it as it grew seemingly small with them, had now left it far behind and far away. And so, the birds chatted all morning and all day. 

And that night, the wind howled a different story, carrying the whispers of the tall and strong-rooted trees, the trees that had made deep entanglements into the aging soil. The trees had never strayed from where they had always been. The trees had never grown any taller than what they had always been. The trees, the quiet trees, had always been as they always were. It was the sapling that had gradually grown away from its forest. 

It’s unclear if the sapling ever noticed this, that the world it had always known wasn’t the part of its life that had changed—it was. It’s also unclear if the sapling ever noticed that the trees never grew shorter; it was only the sapling that grew. In fact, the other trees wouldn’t call the sapling a sapling anymore. It was one of them, they would say. So, the trees, with their omnipotent woody arms, could never embrace the miniature replica of their own selves. Instead, their aging branches hung loosely by their sides with droopy wrinkles carved in long, sad crevices creeping up and down their spines and no youthful new life stretching out and yearning to grow beside them. 

The trees, the quiet trees, had always been as they always were. It was the sapling that had gradually grown away from its forest. 

So, yes, the sapling cried, and its tears died in uneventful disappearances upon its now scratchy skin, once smooth as a small pond at rest, undisturbed by the tumultuous storms to one day be thrown its way. So, yes, the sapling was, at last, aware it may have been the one to grow, to grow away, to grow apart, and it, at last, was aware that all of this happening was entirely pre-written in the starry expanse looking over it every night and that there wasn’t a single reddening leaf the sapling could hold onto to prevent the death and rebirth of the flowers, disappearance and reappearance of the birds, the revolution and evolution of the earth. 

But the trees had known all along. They were watching as the sapling came to these realizations just as they once had. 

So, yes, the sapling wept. But all the while, so did the trees. 

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About the Contributor
Saniya Mishra, Copy-Editing Manager
Saniya Mishra is a senior, writing for her third and final year on staff, busied by her many passions. She is an artist who cares deeply about the world. But there's one love she especially enjoys, loses herself in completely, only to resurface with a newfound perspective and a couple hundred words vomited on a Google Doc. Ever since third grade, she's fallen head over heels for writing. It is her escape. It is her adventure. It is her everything. Favorite writers: Ruta Sepetys, Amanda Gorman Favorite books: 1984 by George Orwell, Salt to the Sea Ruta Sepetys, I'll Give You The Sun Jandy Nelson, The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes by Suzanne Collins Favorite colors: maroon, emerald, navy blue, lavender Favorite songs: "hope is a dangerous thing for a woman like me" by Lana Del Rey, "Can I Call You Tonight?"  by Dayglow, and "Growing Sideways" by Noah Kahan

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