Reading a book this week about Mother trees, I felt a need to find a picture of the author. I do that a lot. It is part of my relationship with the storyteller.
Sometimes I dig a little deeper into her background. Mostly I learn of her life from the story she tells, but my mind always wants to see her face.
Continue reading See the trees
Have you ever pulled yourself hand-over-hand hundreds of feet to the top of a California Redwood and tied your hammock among gardens of plants and critters that had never walked the ground from whence you came?
Continue reading Virtual storytelling
Black cherry is what it is called by the app on my phone that identifies most trees accurately. To me, it just looks lonesome for want of children to swing from its branches.
Continue reading Trees need love, too
Of the (mostly) men I looked up to back in the day, several have turned out to be racist. Or misogynistic. Or both.
Continue reading Pull the (racist) weeds, not the (conservation) garden
“Trees are ents who moved too slowly and have taken root,” Treebeard explained in the “Lord of the Rings” trilogy, by J.R.R. Tolkein. Treebeard was an ent and being long-lived, had much to say.
Research published in recent years appears to indicate that while ents may be fictional, trees do have feelings and do communicate among themselves, usually along pathways made possible by a multitude of fungi growing at the feet, er, roots of those slow-growing, long-living organisms that clean our air, filter our water and provide the raw materials that form our wooden caves.
Continue reading Walt was (almost) correct
I have a picture in my database of a sign beside an apple orchard. The sign actually is a map of a proposed residential development, with the streets named for the trees cut down to make room for the streets and houses.
Continue reading Trees for kids and water
I think I started noticing trees when I lived in Alaska. I wrote a weekly column which my faithful companion, a Bald Eagle named “J Edgar,” delivered from our home in a hollow log to the editor of the community newspaper. Readers were not surprised “The Ol’ Tundra Stomper” (“Tundra Stomping” being Alaskan for “back country hiking”) had an eagle partner.
Continue reading 50 years, yesterday to an Ent
I visited my niece in Philadelphia last weekend. Wow! It was cold. A little scattered rain, but it was the wind funneling between the buildings that really cut into the weave of my fleece-lined jacket as we walked the half-mile to the BBQ joint where we ate a late lunch.
We passed a pipe from which steam poured out like fireplace smoke – and froze into an icicle on the grating mounted to keep critters and human fingers from touching the pipe. Continue reading No place for no trees
Readers of J.R.R. Tolkein are familiar with Ents, those
long-talking, slow-walking ancient creatures of Middle Earth. They are among
the few beings to have survived to the current age. It seems they eventually took
root, owing to their extreme slowness, and became what we know as trees, those
flexible, sometimes giant, beings that wave in the wind.
Continue reading The trees are warning us
Monday morning, the Secretary of the Department of Conservation and Natural Resources cut a ribbon making a 560-acre parcel abutting Strawberry Hill Nature Preserve an access to Michaux State Forest. The move was a good one.
Continue reading Protect the trees, protect the water
I feel badly for anyone who has never climbed a tree. there is some thing special and wondrous about the feeling of being up there in the small branches atmost where the birds fly free. Of course, sometimes that is a scary place to be.
Continue reading More than just a pretty leaf
The moon the past few nights has been amazingly bright, like a humongous LED spotlight angling down through the trees, casting stick shadows on the grass and across my desk.
A couple hundred yards away, an owl hoots, perhaps celebrating his having found dinner scurrying among the shadows. Bats, as soon as the night air warms toward summer, will cling to the trees by day, to come among the shadows in the evening and feast on bugs that have been feasting on me. Payback is heck, I’ve heard said.
Continue reading Stick shadows in the moonlight
“I should prefer to have some boy bend them, / As he went out and in …” Birches, by Robert Frost.
Better a boy than an ice storm should bend the birches. A girl could bend them, as well, if a girl is in the house, and requires exploratory forays into a nearby forest. To climb a really tall tree is to gain a sense of accomplishment not available to parents and other adults who are well advised to stick to the lower, thicker branches.
And to have Mom worried that you might fall is to have an opportunity to show her, “No, I won’t.” There is no finer feeling than to tell her you will not fall, and then prove it.
Continue reading Birches are meant to be climbed, bent