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  • Victoria H

The Tree That Turned Into A Boy…A True Story

Updated: Jul 22, 2020

I saved her. I saved me.

Once upon a time, in elementary school, I wrote a story about a tree who was so lonely he turned himself into a little boy. I was sent home that day with a note from my teacher informing my mother that she needed to curb my “over-active” imagination.

Today I’m an adult. There’s a grand old dame of a maple tree in front of my home. It’s a “she”. I know that. I do have imagination but it’s NOT over-active. It’s just right. And I know she’s a she. She’s a giantess. But she struggled…weakened by age, loneliness and lack of care.

I called for help. I called a professional. A tree guy…a specialist…who, of course, would know much more than I. The tree man said: “Don’t plant anything under this maple, don’t over water or underwater or you’ll lose it. He gave me a long list of chemicals to spread, layer and spray under the giant old soul……

I planted oregano instead. Greek oregano. Not one chemical. She stopped looking lonely. It’s true. She stopped looking lonely. She had company. The plants spread…surrounding her with a Mediterranean carpet of rich greens and purples. I know she smelled it. She seemed happy. I redefined my imagination and named it “intuition”.

Now she whispers in the breeze, shouts and creaks in the winter bluster and loves the cushion of herbs at her feet.

Today I cut the oregano, tied it in bundles and hung it upside down from the railings on my deck. It dangles with the wind tattered prayer flags and fairy lights…drying in the gusts and sunshine.

From here it will go into soups and onto meats, tossed in salads and to my friends in fancy glass jars at Christmas.

The Maple thrives and flourishes with oregano at her feet, roses climbing her thick trunk, woodpeckers at her hairline and me looking up…watching clouds snag in her tallest branches…crowning her with their silvery wisps.

I saved her. I saved me.

Together we dance with breezes.

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