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  • My eyes only recently discovered this great beech tree in a place I often walk. I love its untouched let-to-be wildness; the beech stands there big, weather-scoured, with broken branches littering the ground around it. She has a hard, steady, undisturbed dignity. There are many of these wild champions of the tree families in this area. They are trees as trees are meant to be; they show the weather, the seasons, the years of growth and interaction with the trees around them; they have bits that are misshapen, dead branches sticking out, bark livid with lichen, twisted and stretched with the passion that pushes them to grow and grow every year. Its deeply satisfying to behold, because the personalities of the trees, like this beech, really stand out raw. No humans bother them. Rabbits, deer, foxes, and badgers like to hold meetings beneath them. I've seen them.
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