An ancient one in the form of tree stopped us,
Awed in wonder in my tracks, the field of this one’s presence asked me to slow my approach ... meet this one breath by breath. An inward bow of reverence and profound respect moved through me as I stood simply, un dressed in personality in the gazing and the lore…
No words do I have here, even from my core. I am somehow face to face with a being that both reduces and enlarges ‘me’ of thoughts and words into silence as I step gently closer towards … the dressing down of ideas, feelings and mental meanderings continues with each step. I say simply to this one in words without sound or breath… “I will come in the morning to be with you, get to know you a little… would that be okay?”
And here, in these last four words, “would that be okay?” I enter a doubting, diminished or deferred sense of my personal ‘inequality’ with one such as this.
Over the next 36 hours many areas of questionable integrity come up… the ways in which I do not know myself as this one does.
Clear, strong, integrous, steadfast, reliable, unwavering, generous, surrounded by many young ones…
I could go on with what magnificent qualities this one emanates as I sit now, just metres away and under one of its lower branches. For it was this morning after a night of less sleep that I have arrived to keep an appointment. Although 24 hours postponed, we are now together … and yet somehow also not. I realise as I sit that this mighty Cork Oak, is neither together nor apart. It just is as it is and as it has always been. The many young ones surrounding it know that as they look toward and incline in the direction of this mighty elder of their tribe they can draw out this ones qualities for themselves.
Oak is Oak. Quercus is Quercus. By nature through and through this tree is tree you can depend on.
Can you depend on you?
Can we depend on you?
Can I depend on you?
When you say “I do”, do you?
When you say “I will”, do you carry it forward?
For how long?
When or what is your personal marker of voice, of question, of will?
This one, by presence of body, of being in magnitude and emanation, calls me to notice and to unhide myself from any trace of inauthentic and hollow, flimsy me. This one is also known as suber, quercus suber, has been named for its outer skin of which the texture is corky bark, lightweight and somewhat elastic by nature...
This tree, as all trees, has no expectations and requires no promise from me or other. No debt to be owed nor any seeking of that which I lack.
Really it is simple. As one engaged in living with others, I ask, as though gifted by tree, what qualities of oak can I be that will allow this being to not extinguish its flame or qualities in a world asking for free?
What does it take to know the oak of one’s own being such that it can always be called upon, especially in me?