The Trees is a song by progressive rock band Rush from their 1978 album Hemispheres. The song is also featured on many of Rush's compilation albums and has been a perennial fan favorite of the band's live shows. On the live album Exit...Stage Left, the instrumental "Broon's Bane" is performed as a short classical guitar introduction to the song.
The lyrics relate a short story about a conflict between maple and oak trees in the forest. It has been assumed the story has a meaning, one of libertarian leanings, with some play given to the supposed connection between the maples (who could represent Canada, a generally left-leaning country) and the oaks (possibly the USA). It is also noticed how the song ends "and the trees are all kept equal/by hatchet, axe, and saw!" Some believe this is a metaphor for socialism, which could be keeping the people equal by oppressive measures. However, the lyricist/drummer Neil Peart has affirmed there is none. When asked in the April/May 1980 Modern Drummer magazine if there was a message in the lyrics, Peart said, "No. It was just a flash. I was working on an entirely different thing when I saw a cartoon picture of these trees carrying on like fools. I thought, 'What if trees acted like people?' So I saw it as a cartoon really, and wrote it that way. I think that's the image that it conjures up to a listener or a reader. A very simple statement."