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This poem is taken from PN Review 47, Volume 12 Number 3, January - February 1986.

Balsam Poplar Michael Hamburger

As a sucker, mere stick, awry,
This one was found and uprooted,
Took to the place, and within five years,
True, straight, it has risen
Not at the rate of the Lombardy
Whose one aspiration is to become
A landmark, leaving the slower oaks
To compete for breath, dwarfed as cottages are
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