Possibly this one would choose something by Arthur Rimbaud,
“True, the new era is nothing if not harsh.
“For I can say that I have gained a victory; the gnashing of teeth, the hissing of hellfire, the stinking sighs subside. All my monstrous memories are fading. My last longings depart, – jealousy of beggars, bandits, friends of death, all those that the world passed by. – Damned souls, if I were to take vengance!
“One must be absolutely modern.
“Never mind hymns of thanksgiving: hold on to a step once taken. A hard night! Dried blood smokes on my face, and nothing lies behind me but that repulsive little tree!… The battle for the soul is as brutal as the battles of men; but the sight of justice is the pleasure of God alone.
“Yet this is the watch by night. Let us all accept new strength, and real tenderness. And at dawn, armed with glowing patience, we will enter the cities of glory.” From ‘Farewell’ by Arthur Rimbaud
“— Enjoyment fortifies desire.
Desire, old tree fertilized by pleasure,
While your bark grows thick and hardens,
Your branches strive to get closer to the sun!
“Will you always grow, tall tree more hardy
Than the cypress? — However, we have carefully
Gathered a few sketches for your greedy album,
Brothers who think lovely all that comes from afar!”
From ‘Flowers of Evil’, ‘The Voyage’, by Charles Baudelaire
Or Edgar Allen Poe:
From ‘Spirits of the Dead’, by Edgar Allen Poe
My own saga with Oak Wilt and this particular tree is sung in these past posts:
I’d written about possibly trying to salvage some of it for sawmilling, but that’s not in the cards:
The interior of the trunk is riddled by cracks caused by the rapid shrinkage.
Oak Wilt came on it fast from the roots. By the time anything showed topside the tree was evidently already dead.
Arthur Rimbaud, Charlie Baudelaire and E.A. Poe should have put their heads together and written something immortal about how to get the rest of it down. The job has the potential for being right there in the target zone for their kind of writing. It’s going to be a booger-bear any way I cut it.
Everything else being equal I think I favor pines:
All that tree-stuff hanging up there leads me to think our songsters are too humanocentric about hanging trees.