Think Like a Tree


 

Greek Strawberry Tree (Cyprus Strawberry Tree)...
Greek Strawberry Tree (Cyprus Strawberry Tree). Fruits. Photo taken in Laspi bay (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

 

Think Like a Tree

 

I wasn’t ready for life’s road stretching out before me,

 

It wasn’t as fun as I expected it to be,

 

I whined, I complained, until I learned,

 

The lessons taught by an old fruit tree,

 

In the middle of an orchard the tree quietly stood,

 

He was the oldest and wisest in that neighborhood,

 

Although ancient and twisted his heart was still good,

 

 

 

I questioned him thoroughly about things he knew,

 

From seedling to adulthood, all the years he grew,

 

“Tell me your secret for being young so long,

 

How did you endure when things went wrong?

 

And how did you manage to stay so strong?”

 

 

 

The tree scratched his head, then smiled at me,

 

“Life will never be easy, as you can plainly see,

 

Adjust and be positive, and think like a tree,

 

There are a few things you ought to know,

 

Trees serve others and they’re not for show,

 

If a branch is barren or doesn’t grow,

 

There’s no reason to keep it, just let it go,

 

A tree needs to compete to be the best around,

 

But if it bears no fruit, cut it down,

 

It’s tragic to waste good fertile ground,”

 

 

 

He hesitated and drew a deep breath,

 

“If a tree produces it’s still not left alone,

 

It’s pruned each year even while grown,

 

It will be healthier and productive, a fact well known,

 

Often a tree tries too hard,

 

When too much is produced a tree must be thinned,

 

The remaining fruit will grow larger,” he said as he grinned,

 

“But if there’s too much fruit the limbs might break,

 

How soon, how much, it’s something a gardener must tweak,

 

A tree doesn’t want to be crowded,

 

It needs space to be free,

 

A tree needs to improve constantly, don’t you agree?”

 

 

 

I was ashamed of my previous actions,

 

Because I had been thinking only about me,

 

The way the old tree explained it I could see,

 

Life is not as harsh as I made it out to be,

 

If I need to be pruned to produce more in life,

 

I’ll adjust and be positive and think like a tree.

 

 

 

Welcome to the Valley


 

English: The eastern Tehachapis: Tehachapi Mou...
English: The eastern Tehachapis: Tehachapi Mountain, Double Mountain, Covington Mountain (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

 

From the Tehachapi Mountains into the valley I drove at a steady but cautious pace because I was both excited and tired from the long journey.  I was determined to remain positive as I passed brown sun-baked grass and dried up orchards.  Town after town flew by, few of them thriving or prospering, and it shook my confidence.

 

What did I have to look forward to? I remembered the words of my brother.  “There will be no rent .  Just take care of the place.  Everything is in tip-top shape. You won’t need anything.”  Those promises were comforting as I prepared to collapse and relax when I finally stopped in the drive-way of my new home.

 

I had already inspected the house and grounds so when the moving van arrived, workers I had hired were ready to unload. Everything I had was unloaded with care in the hopes nothing was broken there.

 

While furniture was set up in designated locations I mused over discrepancies in what I expected and what was reality.  The house was not in good shape.  The exterior had recently been painted blue and looked nice but the interior needed some repair.  The bathrooms were my biggest concern because minerals in the water had corroded the copper lines and the shower heads were plugged.  The toilets were so rusted out they needed to be replaced.   Throughout the house major cleaning was necessary along with minor repairs.

 

Outside, the yard was enormous and green. Then I saw the fruit trees and stared openmouthed.  “This is a Garden of Eden!” I stated emphatically.  There were peaches, nectarines, pomegranates, persimmons, oranges, grapes, pears, figs, and more.  I thought, “This is where I can begin a new life.”

 

With over three acres of orchard and lawn the house had to have a name.   “Green Acres” was a fitting name because I was from the city learning country life over again.  It would be like the TV series and it would be fun.

 

During the first week I celebrated each time I emptied a box and put its contents away.  The pile of empty boxes grew taller until one day I flattened them out and took them to the recycling center.  I was trying to do my part in the recycling effort.

 

I planted a garden in my spare time.  Hot days, warm nights and water brought rapid growth. Tomatoes, peppers, squash, cantaloupe, pumpkin, and watermelon were soon thriving.  I eventually got a bumper crop of tomatoes but the rest of the produce? The rabbits and ground squirrels had their way.  But that’s another story or two.

 

 

 

 

 

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