Thursday, August 03, 2006


No, I’m still here. No chainsaw mishaps. It has been a crazy week though. As I predicted, the saw got its workout and I certainly had my work cut out for me. It has gotten hotter as the week wore on. Temps topped out in the low 100s the past three days. The work has been harder due to mourning for the tree. My favorite room in our house is the back deck, and of course the ceiling is painted a shade of blue that changes drastically with the time of day or night you are looking at it. Sometimes there are splashes of white and others there are sparkly rhinestones that seem to move across the ceiling if you stare long enough. The walls are 3D, textured shades of green and brown. It is the most spectacularly designed and decorated room ever. Even Molly, looking up at where the walls meet the ceiling said, “I wonder how God knew that green and blue would look so good together?” The birds, squirrels, cats, raccoons and opossums come and go as they please and seem just as pleased as I am with this sacred space.
For me, the trees are just as much a part of the house as the kitchen is. Several people, having heard about my tree this week, have mentioned that they have a couple trees in their yards that they want to cut because they’re afraid they’ll fall on the house. I can certainly understand this fear, but to me, it would be like cutting off the living room because it threatens the rest of the house.
So it’s been a sort of funeral or wake, cutting and cleaning up that tree. Spending all that time out here with it, remembering having spent so many hours under its shade and breathing its exhalations in the late night hours. It occurs to me that after keeping me cool all summer long, it will now provide warmth for me as I sit here on the deck late in the evenings through the long winter grading papers, recording my thoughts, planning worship services, visiting with friends and spooning with Allison.
I’m sorry big strong hickory tree. You got sucker punched. Thanks for the cool summer shade and the venue for the tree frog serenades. Thank you in advance for the late evening warmth under the crystal clear, brisk, winter skies.

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