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The walnut tree

My grandfather

invited me

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to help him plant

a small walnut tree -

a shelter for birds

in sun and rain,

a living memorial

to his name.

Time passed and I am

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a grandfather now

with small children

playing under its boughs.

We sit in the cool

walnut tree's shade

in the shadow my

grandfather made.

Sarmen (pen name of Armenak Sarkisian)

translated from the Armenian by Diana Der-Hovanessian