This patch of woods had survived the development of the town.
Decades ago, it had been part of a farm. But so had every other lot and acre there.
The other land had been cleared and divided and now houses had stood for fifty years
Along every street and avenue
Where once cattle had grazed
But this patch, this odd-shaped plot of fifteen or twenty acres
Had gone the other way
Left alone now for sixty years, what had once been pasture and orchard
Was now wild forest
Where the oaks and sycamores lorded it
Over the ancient apple trees
Like giants over men
Why it happened this way he never knew
There were people in the city who did know, probably
Lawyers, judges, clerks and would-be heirs
Who had argued and watched as some legal doctrine
Stood in the way of a clear title.
Everyone else’s loss had been his gain
These tall rooms now were his cathedral
His place of solitude.