A Wider Sky

eve the ginkgoIt’s silly the way we all dread what we think is coming when the really big tigers sneak up on us all unawares and bite our throats out before we know what hit us.

Macabre-sounding I know but hey it’s Halloween week, and didn’t the opening episode of AMC’s Walking Dead just have post the highest viewer numbers in the history of something or other.

When I wrote here last Monday I thought I would have to joke around continually this week so as not to feel the sadness I thought I would feel when give of our trees fell to the woodcutter’s blade. 

And in fact it was pretty sad.

I went outside when I saw them out front. The main tree guy of the three-guy team saw my face as he perched high in the 60-foot maple that was once so young and wobbly it needed wire cables to hold it upright  

“Now it’s just a little off the top for these trees out front, right?’ I said to him, wanting to be as certain as the surgeon is when he says “So today we’re operating on your LEFT arm, is that right?” They would be pruning the ginkgo too.

“Just a little off the top!” he called down happily. “Yeah that’s probably what they say when they sit you down in the electric chair too. “

He laughed, but a tad uneasily as it seemed to me. “Nutcase,” he was probably thinking. On the other hand, he knew as well as I did that he and his men would soon be donning the executioner’s hood to cut into the healthy flesh of five tall white pines out back. 

I fled the scene. I knew I couldn’t watch. I stayed away all day: went to an exercise class, wrote in my car and walked round and round the little pond whose beauty I captured in this post.

But when I got home at last I was surprised to find that the place looked pretty good with the five tall pines down. David wanted to cut them because they were impeding the growth of tress that we just plain cherished more: the two crimson maples that hold the birds every season as a beautiful woman loosely holds a strand of pearls; the evergreen an old friend gave us on the occasion of our son Michael’s birth; the once-small-and-slender elm our daughter Annie asked for as a present for her 16th birthday. These were spared.

We’ll need to plant some things – shrubs to hide our homely cars from view and maybe those gorgeous sea grasses currently in fashion   – sure, but all in all it’s an improvement. See if you don’t think so too.

This is the corner of the lot before:

corner of the lot - before

And this is the corner of the lot now:

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This is the view of our driveway before:

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And this is the view of our driveway now:

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Oh I don’t know. Maybe I don’t really like it better. But life demands we make choices. And I’ll admit I wake wake almost elated these mornings, to look outside and find I live now under a wider sky.

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