Today, I would like to introduce you to Window Tree.
Window Tree is a largish Norway Maple in our neighbour’s front yard, which conveniently leans in front of our house thus providing a lovely leafy vista through our front windows.
Over the winter, we see a silvery-skinned skeleton, outlined in dramatic silhouette against the clear cold blue sky.
In the spring, Window Tree gradually unfolds its newborn leaves, reassuring evidence every day that winter is indeed over and the world around me is indeed coming back to life after long hibernation.
Over the summer months, it’s draped in a lush leafy cloak, filtering the hot sunlight and bestowing a calming green glow on the workroom and living room.
Over the next week or two the golden yellows will deepen to reds and orangey browns, and the leaves will be shed from top down, eventually revealing the winter version of Window Tree once again.
So much of our daily lives has become independent of the seasons. Many people work the same hours all year, often doing the same job in the same locations. We can get any food in any month (though we do have to pay a premium for cherries in January and they probably won’t be very good) and travel with little restriction. For those of us who don’t put much into observances of holidays or other special occasions, it sometimes feels as though one day is much like the next, with very little of note to differentiate one month from another. (The intense commercialism surrounding otherwise enjoyable festivities only serves to accentuate this effect in my mind, by making me want to actively avoid many things associated with them.)
But for me, Window Tree is a marker. An indefatigable indicator that the natural world is moving inexorably through its stages. That no matter how how flattened our days become, the trees and birds and flowers and bugs will continue to follow the rhythms of nature and distinguish the seasons.
I just can’t believe that there are people out there that don’t see how important these parts of our world are, and are willing to sacrifice it’s integrity in massive, irreversible ways, solely for their personal comfort and financial profit.
Oh yeah, that reminds me; we need a new, conscientious government, with real, compelling leadership. Anyone got a Canadobama hiding up their sleeves?
Sigh. Oh well, at least I have a big tree to look at.