Advice From A Tree
by Ilan Shamir
Stand tall and proud
Sink your roots deeply into the Earth
Reflect the light of a greater source
Think long term
Go out on a limb
Remember your place among all living beings
Embrace with joy the changing seasons
for each yields its own abundance
The energy and birth of Spring
The growth and contentment of Summer
The wisdom to let go of leaves in Fall
The rest and quiet renewal of winter
Feel the wind and the sun and delight in their presence
Look up at the moon that shines down upon you
And the mystery of the stars at night
Seek nourishment from the good things in life
Earth, fresh air, light
Be content with your natural beauty
Drink plenty of water
Let your limbs sway and dance in the breezes
Remember your roots
Enjoy the view!
When I first read this poem I remember saying "Oh my, Yes, Yes, Yes." It really resonated with me. I loved it so much I wrote it on the inside cover of one of my journals. Each time I opened my journal I would read this poem.
Being a nature lover, and one who turns to nature to unwind and rejuvenate, the tree is always a part of that process. As we are celebrating here right now, the trees bare branches in the winter remind me of a delicate lace against the blue winter sky. Just when I think that those bare branches are my favorite part of a tree, Spring arrives and I fall in love with the pink and white buds and blossoms bursting forth. Then of course, the lush green canopy of leaves arrive in Summer, and oh, they must be the most beautiful thing I've seen! Until the brilliant colors of Fall arrive, and well, you've guessed it, I think that they must be my favorite part of a tree!
The poets words that I read over and over are about embracing the changing seasons. Change is tough for me, but looking at change through the eyes of the poet, through the life of a tree, has helped me manage change more easily. Each season has a reason, and the changes that happen to the tree over the course of a year allows for much growth and renewal. What a beautiful metaphor of life. We all go through cycles - good times and bad times, of everything going right, and then, it seems, everything falling apart. We have times of great creativity and productivity, then possibly long periods of quiet and reflection. Remember, like the tree, during these changes we are becoming stronger, we are renewing and growing, we are preparing to burst forth again.