oak & ash

“There is a thing in me that dreamed of trees,”- A Dream of Trees, Mary Oliver

There are two trees in my life, an oak and an ash that have served as my personal sentinels throughout the years, visibly documenting the ceaseless progression of time. Each season, I have gazed upon them, seeing bare limbs bud, green leaves grow, and auburn leaves tumble and whirl.

Presently, the trees are dressed in tones of green, gold, and brown, their transitory garments paying homage to the warm autumn days and the approaching winter nights. Perhaps it is my viewing of them that has influenced the crafting of this year’s Thanksgiving favors. Decorated with the season’s transitional garb, they feature snippets of holiday recollections and encase a square of chocolate. During their crafting, I was reminded how the trees themselves had been part and parcel of so many memories-- the ash, a custodian of our frequently visited treehouse; the oak, an ever altering visage in numerous generational photographs. Both have played the silent companion to those that have come, and gone, and those that remain.

I think I like these two trees best, a bit more than the faithful evergreens that dutifully maintain their appointed colors. Not that the live oak and cedar aren’t lovely, trimmed in traces of light, white snow or outfitted in their vivid greens against the summer’s scorched landscape; but the evergreens do not quietly remind me of the unremitting nature of change and the cyclical beauty that accompanies it.

It’s the season of thanks, and once again, there is no better time to enjoy these precious trees with the loved ones in my life- the ash, during an early morning breakfast with my husband, and the oak, as it greets me and my entourage of little ones as we tramp and plod along the lane.

Happy holiday. Happy life.

Postscript:  Even though there will be sweets aplenty amongst our Thanksgiving feast, I couldn’t resist the opportunity to reflect upon a few memories and share just one more square of chocolate with my fellow chocoholics. These small 3.25” X 3.25” Kraft envelopes fit my purpose perfectly. A bit of cardstock, decorative paper, and copper-colored fasteners were all that were required to create this simple, sweet treat.   

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