In the Shade of a Tree

I carve out time to sit in the park in the shade of a magnificent tree, and look up. I find peace in the strong trunk and branches, in leaves, still in the heat of the afternoon, and the sun’s rays barely peeking through.

I watch a man wearing a red shirt climb out of his red F-150 and pull a bicycle from the cargo bed. He takes time to wrap his hands in something black, then climbs on the bike and pedals down the road.

A curious marmot climbs over the riverbank as walkers pass by; seeking treats, most likely, but he is disappointed today.

People in an unmotorized boat float down the river. Teenagers congregate in groups in the shade. A group of older folk have arranged their camp chairs in a circle on the grass to visit.

I chat on the phone with my daughter (There’s still so much to talk about, despite having just spent the weekend together!), and look up into the peace of this tree. When our conversation is finished I linger, reluctant to get back on the hamster wheel that is sometimes this life.

And I wonder . . .

As life hints at returning to something more “normal” will we forget lessons learned in the quiet?

Will we take deep pockets of inactivity with us into whatever comes next?

Have we come to appreciate the wisdom of not always doing?

Are we comfortable with less? Or frantic for more?

I rise from my spot in the shade of this beautiful tree and heat heats me like a blast from a furnace as I climb into my Escape. Peace comes with, and moments like this make up the kind of life I want to cultivate.


I’m a writer, reader, and creative. I thought by now I’d have things figured out, but I keep coming up with more questions. I think that’s okay. I’m here most mornings pondering ordinary things.
1 comment
  1. Your words are thoughtful and enquiring … I hope very much there is no return to ‘normal’. I long for a world-wide conversation about a way forward for humanity and the non-human world which honours, respects and cares for both.

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