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  • Trees mark the passage of time. Slowly as they grow, you don’t always notice how they change until you view a picture of a few years prior and realize just how much they’ve grown. They give us hope in spring as the fresh buds peek out of dormant branches. In winter, their stark nakedness reminds of who is in charge then. The brilliant leaves of fall help us look back on warm summer memories and suggest that we, too, start thinking about exchanging our linen and cotton for wool.

    The wind and ice storms rip their branches down leaving gaping wounds to heal slowly. The disfigurement shows us that perfection is an illusion. That the shelter they provide from the August sun is not always there.

    Trees do have the benefit of outlasting each of us if they can survive all that nature tosses at them. Perhaps more dangerous to trees is us. They cannot get out of our way so we cut them down. Grinding their roots to a pulp or leaving brutal, raw stumps of those we put to use or the unfortunate trees that occupied land now covered by a reservoir.

    I ache for the trees burned in the Amazon. Acres daily. The loss of which contributes to climate change as they’re no longer able to purify the air. The burning is multiple times worse than all of our air travel from the dawn of aviation to now.

    Yes, trees mark the passage of time in their absence. Once there and now gone, they tell the story of our follies. But in many places, we replant to start the process anew. And these seedlings give us hope that the future will be there. Restored.
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