Trees I

And inside every turning leaf is the pattern of an older tree

The shape of our future, the shape of all our history


One of my favorite things in the world is the color green, not just the pasty paint green color, but a specific instance of green. Henry James refers to it as “the golden leafy moment”-- that time when the summer sun pours itself through the green leaves in trees, dynamically changing both the sunlight and the leaf to pure brilliance. It's the burning chrorophyll place where life is generated, like a marriage. The celebration of that marriage abounds every summer day.


I couldn't ever get sick of that green-gold hybrid shivering through the air and lighting my eyes, shimmering, trembling, shaking with life... like God's confetti.

Have you ever noticed how trees and plants spread and stretch themselves out through space to catch every falling ray of light? How, over time, they launch themselves away from the comfort of the soil and from a single  tiny seed and stretch out every way they can? No direction is foreign to a tree; there is no route their roots and their branches will not pursue. Time-lapse photography would show us, over time, a tree literally exploding outwards into being.

Shel Silverstein's tree is not unique. All trees are giving trees-- risking weather, elements, air, wind, everything for a larger existence. They stretch so their seeds will have a chance to growth.  It seems to be the whole function of their form to give their seeds a chance to live. That, and to reach ever upward, almost like a form of worship or prayer.  What is that but divine?

"Trees are the earth's endless effort to speak to a listening heaven."   -Rabindranath Tagore