Thursday, April 30, 2020

the tree

The tree rises from the  dark.

It circles around the "heart of darkness" from which it reaches towards the light.

A tree is a perfect presence.

It is somehow able to engage and integrate its own dissolution.

The tree is wise in knowing how to foster its own loss.

It does not become haunted by the loss nor addicted to it.

The tree shelters and minds the loss.

Out of this comes the quiet dignity and poise of a tree's presence.

Trees stand beautifully on the clay.

They stand with dignity.

A  life that wishes to honour its own possibility
has to learn too how to integrate the suffering
 of dark and bleak times
into a dignity of presence.

Letting go of old forms of life, a tree practices
hospitality towards new forms of life.

It balances the perennial energies of winter and spring
within its own living bark.

The tree is wise in the art of belonging.


The tree can reach towards the light,
endure wind, rain, and storm,
precisely because it is rooted.

Each of its branches is ultimately anchored in a reliable depth of clay.

The wisdom of the tree balances the path inwards with the pathway outwards.

John O'Donohue
Eternal Echoes
Photo:  Peter Bowers