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Beneath This Tree


Dear Friend, how good it is to sit once more in the sacred space beneath your dark green canopy. How big you've grown in my absence! I see that you are doing well, casting shadows far beyond your center, spreading branches wide in all directions, fingers pointing to the light.
 
I well remember the days when you were not so broad and tall; I could circle my arms around you, and stretch to pull myself up to rest among your branches.  Countless summer days were spent with my back leaned up against you while I read book after book, heading home only when the sun dropped too far to make out words upon the page.
 
As I grew older life got harder, far more complicated than those simple carefree days. Often then I came to you, seeing shelter and solace from the cruelties of others that confounded me. You saw my tears, and called the gentle breeze to dry them. Together you soothed my soul with promises of better days whispered through your leaves.
 
The time came when I was grown and had to move away to start my own life. I remember still the sad goodbye when I embraced you and pledged to always remember what a good friend you'd been.  How I missed you as life led me on rocky paths for all those years; I longed for the shelter of your outstretched arms!
 
Now at last I have come home again, I've come to spend some time and tell you of my journey. Both of us have grown old now, my fingers gnarled like your branches. In these years of approaching sunset, I wanted you to know that, in spite of everything, in the end I learned that life is beautiful, love is real, and peace is always within our reach. 
 
I am happy now, can you believe that? I barely can myself! I love and I am loved, life is good, and very rarely is there reason for shedding tears. Just like you, old friend, I have grown strong from the center outward; I have learned to reach out to others and up to Our Creator.  When the end comes I will smile and say "Thank you for this time spent upon the earth," and I will ask that they bring my ashes and return me once again to the sacred space beneath your canopy of leaves.

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This post was written for Two Shoes Tuesday
where the prompt choices this week are big and waiting...
Come and join us there!

20 comments:

  1. I, too, have a tree I remember fondly. I spent so much time up in its branches, simply feeling the sway with the wind.
    This is beautiful, Josie. Your story is such an uplifting tale of hope and happy endings.

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    1. Thank You Christine, trees have always been my friends, nestled in the branches I felt invisible, like I belonged there. :-)

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  2. This is an excellent piece; very well done. It reminds me of 'The Giving Tree". We are supposed to give back; you did here.

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    1. Thank you kindly, Annie. I enjoyed the telling of this tale, a trip down memory lane lined with trees. Trees are few and far between where I live now, I miss them dearly. I haven't heard of "The Giving Tree" but now it's definitely something that I must check out!

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    2. I thought the same thing. You've never heard of the Giving Tree? Oh, Josie, you must read it. Shel Silverstein's wonderful book.

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    3. I've heard of it I think, but know nothing about it, definitely on the must read list now! :-)

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  3. It is interesting to me how much a tree can mean in our lives. They truly are symbols of growing strong, reaching out, being there to help someone and touching the sky in search of God.
    Great post.

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    1. It's true GS, they are symbolic, and they speak to us of strength and endurance while having the flexibility to bend and such impressive beauty, even when naked of their leaves! I'm glad you liked the post!

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  4. This is lovely honey. I can so relate. Our paths were so very much alike. It lead us to where we are today and that's a good place.

    Did you know that trees talk to me. Yes they do. Hubby didn't believe it until he experienced it for himself.

    Have a terrific day honey. Big hugs. ☺

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    1. Thank you Sandee, funny how those bumpy, twisted roads led to such amazing places! I absolutely believe that trees talk to you. Native Amerians will tell you that all created things are endowed with spirit... water, trees, and even rocks. I am certain that is true.

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  5. I was going to say the same thing as McGuffy Ann - it reminds me of a beloved book, The Giving Tree. This is an exquisite piece. Such a celebration of the journey that is this life, all of it.

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    1. Thank you Carrie! I felt good about this piece when I had finished, it came straight from the heart. Our lives are so very much intertwined with other living things and seasons. Now I definitely have to read The Giving Tree, something tells me that I will love it!

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  6. Trees are alive and have their own stories to tell. They grow old and majestic. I just love your post. :)

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    1. This is true Mary, they spend years and years growing, weathering the storms, and dancing in the rain, just like we do! Thank you for your kind comments!

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  7. Wow, Josie. I always love to read your writing because you're a talented writer. Your gift really shone through on this piece. It's beautiful.

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    1. Thank you so much Elsie! I felt good about this piece, and I'm glad you liked it!

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  8. Cool, story makes me want to grow a tree, or sit under one in my back yard and read. : )

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    1. Thanks Joseph! I'm betting it's a little too warm and humid under your tree this week, now maybe with a fan on a long extension cord! :-) I managed to find a small tree to park my car under while we ate in town tonight, and it brought it down about 20 degrees inside. Just one of the many reasons I love trees... shade! :-)

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  9. Oh I just loved that post Josie,it made me a bit teary!I love trees,I don't know why but I just do,I love woods too.We haven't got a big garden but at the bottom of our patio are some trees and I have taken to sitting there just lately,if I have a spare five minutes,it's not the sunniest spot but I love it,so peaceful and calming. I think that's what trees mean to me....calm. Thanks for sharing your tree thoughts with us,I really enjoyed them :-)

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    1. I so agree with you Jess, trees have a very calming spirit about them, my big tree knew all my secrets growing up, and I always felt better after a sit there. I like to think it enjoyed my visits too! Thank you for such a nice comment, it makes me happy when folks can identify with something I write.

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Your comments are always appreciated... they make me smile! :-)