What If Trees Can Talk

When the leaves fell and winter came, the trees did not stand naked against the sky and cry for mercy. They called to one another, as trees do, urging each other to stand together. Together, their leafless limbs called out, we can weather Arctic storms and Polar chills. Together, we are strong.

And snow fell and covered the earth in its virgin blanket and the sun beamed and the moon sang a song of the seasons turning, turning as the earth spun and the stars pricked holes into the dark of night so they too could watch the storms of winter pass through.

And the trees stood strong, together. They whispered amongst their kin, ‘Dig deep. Dig deep’. And they thrust their roots ever deeper into the frozen ground as the storms howled and snow fell and their sap ran slower, slower but always enough to carry the breath of life flowing inside their weathered trunks.

And the winds blew and the seasons changed and spring arrived with its beguiling invitation to blossom and flourish.

And tiny seeds poked their heads out of the earth and the sun welcomed them with its golden beams full of warmth and growing light. And buds appeared on the trees’ many branches and slowly, ever so slowly beneath spring’s warm kisses, they blossomed and flourished.

When winter came the naked trees did not cry out for mercy. They stood together and weathered the storms and when spring came, as is their nature, they blossomed and flourished again.


About the artwork:

I have been exploring creating stamps. What fun! I carved the large leaf stamp, printed it with black ink onto a very sheer piece of pale pink rice paper. After creating the background, I affixed it to my journal page and then painted it with acrylic ink.

I also collaged in a piece of woven white rice paper and a pansy I had dried at the end of summer.

I love exploring, ‘what if’s’…

The ‘what if’ for this journal page was, “What if trees can talk?” According to Robin Wall Kimmerer author of Braiding Sweetgrass, they can. I like that belief.

The photo is of two stamps I’ve carved.

What Does The Map Of Your Life Look Like?

It happens every autumn.

Summer days swiftly turn into cooler nights, harbingers of autumn’s fast approach.

This morning, as I sit at my desk, the river flowing past in glacier green beauty, I see no rafters floating by. Just the branches of the trees bending in the cool morning wind gusting in from the north.

I hear the sound of the leaves whispering stories of the wind to the squirrels running up and down their trunks. They are gathering food for their long winter’s nap.

The sky hangs low, laden with pregnant grey clouds waiting to release their bounty on the earth below.

And I am warm and snug inside, wrapped in the bliss of watching leaves dance on trees and water flowing by.

Savouring these small graces of my morning view is my antidote to world events that stalk the edges of my peace of mind. They remind me that change is happening, even when I feel like the world is stuck in a bad movie.

In, Braiding Sweetgrass, Robin Wall Kimmerer writes, “The Skywoman story, shared by the original peoples throughout the Great Lakes, is a constant star in the constellation of teachings we call the Original Instructions. These are not “instructions” like commandments, though, or rules; rather, they are like a compass: they provide an orientation but not a map. The work of living is creating that map for yourself. How to follow the Original Instructions will be different for each of us and different for every era.”

The work of living is creating that map for yourself.”

I am wondering on my map. Wondering what words, images, sounds, feels, thoughts I would use to describe the map I am creating with my life.

It is good to wonder. It is good to explore my wonderings. To visualize and actualize my map.

What about you? Do you wonder about the map you are creating with your life?