The tenacity of trees. Living, as I do, close to many trees and also close to humans, I am aware of risk and disease. I see aspens toppled in gales, massive maples dying branch by branch. And yet I also live with a sustaining sense of endurance in spite of the odds.
Nearby, in a poor location, clinging to sandy, shallow soil at the very edge of a cottage lane is a barely recognizable American beech. The trunk is so aged that it has cork-like bark, very unlike
the usual smooth elephant-grey bark of this species. This hollow, apparently dead trunk has many “windows”, leaving it open to the sky and showing how fragile the tree is. Wonderfully, there is one remaining limb, jutting up to the sky. On this spindly branch flourishes a cluster of very live leaves.