the grandeur of trees

fall 2013


praise and blame, gain and loss, pleasure and sorrow come and go like the wind. to be happy, rest like a giant tree in the midst of them all. — buddha

when we moved into our house, it was not on the list of realtor highlights: beautiful front yard tree, wide canopy, provides privacy, shade, and delight. will not be swayed by storms but will sprinkle abundant, pointed, leafy confetti in late autumn. its roots apparent in the ground it has erupted to grow deeply. it will greet you every morning, with the sunrise cascading from behind it’s fullness to reach your windows. it will bid goodnight each evening with a bow. and every 4th of july, when you sit on the roof to watch the fireworks, for one night a year you will feel like holding hands with its outstretched grandeur. unlike any other, it will captivate your heart forever.

what is it about the love of the only tree in our front yard that could bring us to our knees when the dreaded red “x” showed up on it, a symbol the town uses to indicate trees that appear to be infested with the emerald ash borer. our hearts broke to find it marked one recent day in march.

its days were numbered. we danced around it on sunny days. we colored it in sidewalk chalk, like an ancient ritual. we sat against it. we traced our fingers along its bark. we poured out the love we had for it in any way we knew how (which i admit is limited). we sat in awe of its grandness.


and yesterday our beloved tree was cut down. the only one at home to witness it was our dear Tiki. as we drove up we glanced across the sun-drenched front yard, barren, missing its lifetime partner. a perfect symbiotic relationship to all the other living things in radius.

there was something special about this tree that we remarked about every year, especially in the spring when we would comment on its beauty in budding. and again in the autumn as we would wait patiently for the late drop of all its leaves. we were connected. our family, our home, that tree. 

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