There is a tree in the back garden of Mrs Wilson’s house. A sycamore tree that has been growing tall for decades. I have always remembered it there. Offering its shade in the stifling summer heat, and its protection from the gushing winter hail. It has always been there. An ever-present protector.
Mrs Wilson says it was her grandfather that planted the tree. But she herself isn’t so sure about it either. How many generations have sat on its branches, pulled its leaves, climbed up its thick trunk and even hung from it self-made swings to play with. The incidents and life-experiences this tree could have witnessed are beyond measure.
Gemini, Mrs Wilson’s small Yorkshire dog was attached to this tree. No-one realized why. Ever since he was a puppy he would crawl up by its trunk and fall asleep. Whenever he was scolded for something he would run outside and hide under the shade and large, falling leaves of the tree. It was his haven. And even in the rain and thunder, he would stare outside the window at the tree and howl, upset that it was suffering the bad weather all alone when he was stuck inside.
It is amazing how creatures become attached to one another so intensely, so absolutely, so tightly. Things that some may consider so unimportant, things such as a tree that people simply cut down if it is in their way, things that do not offer some apparent benefit. It is these things though that provide the refuge, the protection, the support that we so often need.
Gemini found it in a great, old, sycamore tree.
Mrs Wilson found it in a photo of her husband who recently passed away.
And I, I find it anywhere, depending on the place and circumstance – in a soft-toy given by a loved one, in a picture of happier times, in a letter of love, in places that come from the heart.