Friday, 10 March 2023

My tree

I recently started reading a book given to me at Christmas named, 'Être un Chêne' - to be an oak tree. The author talks about having one's own tree, in his case an incredibly ancient oak tree. Having a tree to mean a special tree, a companion tree, a tree that you sit under, feel the bark, talk too, and perhaps hug, if no one else is about - or even if they are.

We are surrounded by trees in our garden. I like them all. I like all the trees that feature on our daily dog walks, but there's one in particular that I have homed in on as being particularly outstanding in its noblesse - an oak, perhaps two hundred years old, rather on its own standing at the edge of a large field with distant views of other oaks. Perhaps that's why I notice it so much. I rather feel it should be with others of its kind which it probably was before many of the hedges and trees were ripped up/chopped down by zealous farmers wishing to gain a couple more meters of sunlight - something they may slowly be understanding is not such a great idea as the summer heat increases each year... 

Hugging the oak is tricky as a ditch separates walkers from the field but I always stop and admire the tree's shape, observe the sparrows and tits hopping around its structure and perhaps have a word about the weather, state of the world, etc. How interesting it would be to be able to see what changes to the landscape the oak would have witnessed over the passing decades.

I have yet to photograph my tree with its new spring foliage, heavier summer canopy and lastly its yellow and brown phase but here it is in midwinter, and on a milder day when the snakehead fritillaries are just starting to emerge - one of the early signs of spring in our region of France.

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