Monday, November 30, 2009

In The Woodland

Whose woods are these? I think I know. I have been here before, almost one year ago, if my memory serves. Silently standing all together, as a flock of elegant birds with feathers of fir - shoulders touching, wings folded - this woodland, like all woodlands, quietly bids me welcome.
I am Lucy in the wardrobe. Looking this way and that, I gently push aside boughs of green needles, and enter in. All outside sound evaporates to nothingness, and I am alone. Fistfuls of white light, man’s recreation of the stars, drape and swag above me, casting a surreal glow over this most unusual forest. I run my fingers through emerald arms, bury my face in soft branches. I am intoxicated by the overwhelming smell of winter.
One by one, each tree lets me pass, scores of silent beryl eyes marking my movements as I search for the one I came to find.
Soon, far down another long viridian hallway, I see him, off to the side, regal in his perfection. Tall as an ent, pure magic, his branches seem to wave me over. I stand before him, looking up to the place where a star should be, and softly whisper, “are you the one”? Perhaps it was the wind, for it was strong that night, but I am certain the great tree bowed.

We bore him home by moonlight to his place of honor by the grey stone fireplace and he stands there now, wearing his robes of tinsel and ruby, gold teardrops and fairy light. He presides over Christmas with a dignified beauty, a grace afforded but a few of his kind, trees chosen to share a small portion of the wild wood’s mystery with those of us who dwell indoors. He greets us every morning with his lush sparkle, his holiday perfume. He is the crowning jewel of our festivity, the guardian of our tokens of love for one another - those gaily wrapped boxes nestled under his boughs.
Once again, we are charmed by his presence.

Painting above by Sophia Elliott