Saturday, July 12, 2014

A STAND OF TREES


                                                                         




From a prompt at my Writers' Group  (a line drawing of a stand of trees)

The stand of oak seedlings had been planted decades earlier.   Over the ensuing years it had provided shelter and shade to both people and wildlife and acorns for the resident squirrels.   As the neighbourhood and city grew, the oak trees endured and grew their lofty branches and thick trunks in testimonial to the rich soil below.

A library was built a little to the south of the grove and a swimming pool a hundred meters to the north.  A bank and bus exchange followed a short distance to the east and soon the area was a ghost of its former peaceful haven.  Shadows seemed to darken the space between the trees and winter winds creaked ominously through the branches.

Talk began of unsavoury individuals loitering about and using the trees as a refuge or camouflage.  "The trees should come down; they're a menace," was one of the increasing complaints and suggestions.  The trees bowed their heads in shame.  Some still loved the trees and remembered their past, protesting the innocence in the brown and green hues but the shrill voices continued until the day the bulldozers came followed by the paving trucks.  Soon there was no trace of the trees; only a straggly row of newly planted juniper bushes--that hardy evergreen beloved of landscapers of unloved and unwatered areas-- lined the otherwise bare courtyard.

Where do the souls of trees go?

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