My friend the tree

“My friend, the tree, is dead…” sang Alexandra in 1968. The old childhood friend fell in the early morning red.

When I heard this song for the first time a good 10 years later, it moved me to tears. Even when I was a child, I had had a tree like this as a friend that I could look at from the window of my child’s room. Spring, summer, autumn and winter I read from “my” stately birch, I watched the wind playing with the leaves and sometimes churning in the branches, the brilliance of sunlight on every leaf, shimmering drops after a rain. While listening to music, I dreamed myself into this lively dance.

Later, when choosing my various apartments, I always made sure that I could at least look out of one window into a tree.

When you hug a healthy tree or even lay your hand on the warm bark, you can feel some of its pulsating power. A walk in the forest helps us to regenerate, to strengthen, to heal, even if we are not consciously aware of the different shades of color of the tree community and the ethereal scents that it exudes. We breathe deeper and feel refreshed.

Trees are like antennas between heaven and earth. With their root system, which mirrors the shape of their crown, they anchor themselves in the earth and draw water and food into the trunk and periphery. You exhale and inhale, thereby purifying the air. They offer housing for many creatures and comfort for stressed eyes. Their fruits in turn nourish the earth – a perfect cycle.

They are a symbol of life, growth and also steadfastness – like this tree I photographed in Iceland. Apparently alone, it defies wind and weather and withstands the storms, even if they have left their mark. This tree not only holds on to the earth, but also binds it to itself. Without it, the landscape is subject to erosion. After the Icelandic forests disappeared through deforestation in earlier times, the need to reverse this process through reforestation was recognized. And so you could read in October 2019 that Iceland’s tallest tree is now 28.70 meters high.

While it seems as if each tree stands alone, we now know that it communicates in a fascinating way with other trees in its vicinity through its root system, as can be read here, for example: /forest-animals-and-plants/trees-exchanging-each-other/

Trees give us so much and we can learn from them. I want to be strong like a tree – firmly rooted and antennae raised to the sky.

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