Home Features Politics & Culture Religion & Spirituality Anne Frank’s Tree By Michael White March 27, 2008 A fourteen-year-old girl— on tip-toe in the attic— saw the huge horse-chestnut, Westerkerk tower, and the random flight of gulls. “Our tree is in full blossom . . . even more beautiful than last year,” she wrote, on May 13th, 1944. A nightingale once built her nest beside the house of a poet. He was ill. He sat beneath a plum one day, and when he returned, his hands were filled with the scraps of stanzas. Here is the plum: I know I shouldn’t, but I pluck one leaf, I crush it, place it beneath my tongue, releasing its bitter mint. Praise to the angel’s wordless gaze—her angled cut, the balm of moss—who coaxes the root, who stakes the shoot of the chestnut and the plum.