Friday, December 7, 2012

O Christmas Tree, O Just Like Me ...

No matter if you are a human being, an ant or a bee, or even a tree – hey I love to rhyme! – you, we, are all important and each have a role to play here on this earth (no matter how big or small).

A month before Christmas, a neighbour denuded or raped a tree violently (with professional tree cutters) of its beautiful hanging cedar branches. This tree who once held many birds, that sweetly sang, in its arms like a human mother with her baby. In fact, just the weekend prior, I witnessed a number of blue stellar jays fly up to perch beneath its bounteous green, seemingly cradled and caressed.

I LOVE trees, can you tell!? Some of you might consider me a tree worshipper possibly in disguise. Indeed, my twitter name includes ‘treehugger’ with a photo of me hugging a tree which I do from time to time. I used to, for instance, hug ‘Big Doug,’ a tall pine tree amidst others in a forest clearing at Capilano Suspension Bridge Park. I’d get a friend to join me in hugging it whenever we went by to visit the grounds, and would do so in her absence when she wasn’t able to join me.

Have you ever wondered something along the lines of: If everything is energy, would this tree (and any tree for that matter) have spirit, i.e., a heart and soul (metaphorically speaking of course!)?

Inanimate objects may not speak with words, but they may ‘whisper.’ I know a person who actually hears trees, what messages they have to share. I consider him a tree whisperer: think horse whisperer. I bet he’s not the only one.

I imagine trees feel perhaps somewhat like animals with non-verbal communication, more powerful than words as we humans know: a plant or flower withers and dies, or not.

When I originally wrote a draft of this posting, my questions were: Will this tree die? What will become of it? Will new growth appear from its many mini-stumps like that which occurs in forests?

Potential growth or not, I had such a strong urge, a deep longing to hug this tree – what was left of it! – to console it, pray over it, and offer it some loving, tender healing touch. I felt though that it was probably too late to do so, and furthermore, I would be trespassing on my neighbour’s property and feared potential consequences. I wish I hadn’t been concerned for me, but more for the tree.

Yes, I admit, fear kept me from sharing my love for this tree, my ‘other’ unspoken neighbour who seemingly didn’t have a voice. Why did I not advocate for it? Fight for its rights to be and to live in one piece. As I write that I also think of the word ‘peace.’

I wrote a poem this summer when I was in a very relaxed and peaceful state entitled, “What I Learn from Trees.” Hmmm, if the computer would allow me to type it with single spacing, then you would see it her; however, it is not cooperating with me now! (And yes, I did check the setting for spacing.)

This tree unfortunately did not make it. Eventually it was brought to its ultimate death in the form of a stump as it was deemed ugly and unbearable to look at. Such a shame, such a loss as it not only served as a shelter and abode for wildlife, but also a protection from the elements for me, not to mention just to simply witness its glorious, natural beauty and earthy scent.

It had served its purpose(s), albeit short-lived.

O Christmas tree, O Christmas tree,
How lovely were thy branches!

What gifts do trees offer you? And, how are you like a tree?


  1. Forgot to mention how I felt about what happened to this beaut of a tree. I was initally shocked, then upset and angry, then sad. I even cried...yes, shed some tears for this tree...that's how moved I was. Does anyone else get like this with trees?

  2. I too am a tree lover so much so that it would be very difficult for me to live somewhere without trees. I could, but I wouldn't enjoy it. And I also agree that trees are good to hug :)

    1. Yes, same likewise! In fact, that is why, in part, I moved to where I now live. I'd like to think that trees love to receive hugs, though I have yet to ask my 'tree whisperer' friend about this. ; )