Have you ever heard/read the poem “Trees”? It’s a short poem by Joyce Kilmer. Although very popular, “Trees” is often dismissed as simple, dated, sentimental, and sappy. This poem has underwhelmed on such a grand scale that Columbia University (Wilmer’s alma mater) holds the annual Alfred Joyce Kilmer Memorial Bad Poetry Contest. I’m no literary scholar, but I think “Trees” gets a bad rap. For one thing the timing of Kilmer’s work toward the beginning of the twentieth century predates the modernist movement by barely a decade. To judge Kilmer against poets like TS Elliot and Ezra Pound is like judging 90’s climbers for wearing SKIDZ. It’s not their fault that Prana and Lululemon didn’t exist yet.