birds in a barrel's mission is to release creative nonfiction into the wild.

40 Days & 40 Writes is its first project.

Money Doesn't Grow On Trees

"Money doesn't grow on trees,"
they say.
I've been looking
for those trees.
I'd like to pick
bills—like apples,
coins—like cherries,
basketsful to store
for decades of rainy days.
But—
money doesn't grow on trees.

"By sweaty labor
you will eat,"
God told Adam,
"And the cursed earth
will sprout thorny weeds."
Not money,
nor fruit neither,
growing in the trees.
Money grubbing
has a bad rep,
though we all do it
one way and another
to keep body and soul alive.
We search for work
that satisfies,
that is worthwhile,
that glorifies
self or God
or some other;
and—
makes us money.
We long for work
that creates something—
truth or beauty or fun.
Or—Money.

A feeling, a thing,
An Experience.
"It can't be had
for love nor money."
Some things too dear
to purchase;
so dear they're merely had,
or held and let go.

"Money can't buy happiness," they say.
But when the stomach growls
cents buy food that belly fills,
and happiness reigns
—well, pleasure anyhow.

"Money can't buy love."
That's for sure,
and love without money
is sorely stretched,
and broken as often as not.
"Money, money, money, money,
money, money, money, money"
—a new song goes.
A constant cry;
need gone awry.
Work turns the earth,
while money vamps the wits
and saps sensation's joy.

Money is energy,
the cosmos knows
and sends it to those
who know what to do with it.
Tell that to the poor
so they will ken
that ignorance, not greed,
has kept them low.

Damn this thing called money!
A substitute for goods,
the good.

Money—
someone's idea,
in place of things,
to make it easy to carry
what one owns;
that makes it easy
to forget the real things
owned and known.

Money is an act of faith,
and treason too.
Taking money forsakes
the work of body,
the stuff of earth.
And claims them for use.
Money—easier to steal
than a tree or a chair or a bit of land.
"I'm not motivated by money,"
she said righteously,
and reached for someone's garbage
in the cafe dumpster,
too good for her own good.
She's motivated by need;
to seek the thing that money means
while she believes that
"Money doesn't grow on trees.”

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