Conversations with Trees

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spellmuch's picture
Joined: 2013/12/16

I’m sure no one would have described me as a particularly sensitive child.  I was hyperactive and lived to run.  I was unmoved by my little sister’s whining and complaining that I always left her behind.  “Just go faster”, was my solution.  Lacking compassion and being completely involved in my own physical expression, I have no idea why I was able to experience the voices of trees.


There were times that I was moved, but usually when I was humiliated by other kids or family members that I was injured enough to go hide, and it was always in a tree.


My mother tells a story of me climbing a tree before I turned two and how terrified she was that I would fall out.   I never did.


There was a safety in the trees that I couldn’t have articulated as a kid, and I only felt in the arms of my grandmother down south.  I really couldn’t think of anyone or anything that gave me comfort like I found swaying in the boughs of any tree I could climb.  


One time I remember I missed catching a fly ball during a softball game in third grade.  I was very small and was afraid of the big ball coming at me.  It landed on the ground next to me with a deafening thud.  All the kids on my team made fun of me and were very angry with me. 

I dropped my glove and ran to the big oak on the hill away from the kids and climbed the lower branch and kept going until I couldn’t be seen.  I lay across a limb on my stomach and listened or tried not to listen to the sound of the kids in the distance.  I wasn’t crying, but I felt like I wanted to.  I just hugged the tree. 


Sounds slowed down, everything seemed to slow down.  The air slowed, my breath slowed and the rustling of the leaves in the tree slowed down and became louder at the same time.  The leaves were all I could hear, barely moving.  I felt the message rather than heard it.  The tree said, “PEACE” and I felt at peace.  I felt time stretch out like I could feel the life timeline of the tree.  So many years stretched in front of me and became part of me.  Time seemed to stretch endlessly along with a love that was new to me.  It was a timeless, cosmic love that even my grandmother wasn’t able to convey.  I felt loved completely and unconditionally and I knew it was coming from not just the tree, but from time.  Then, the teacher’s whistle blew and recess was over.


This same experience happened to me several more times as a child and again in college. 


I was walking home late at night alone along a wide lane after work.  I was tired and anxious about all of the millions of things I had to get done the next day, hoping I could complete half of them and still pass my classes.  I was not in a state of repose one expects to be in when receiving a mystical experience.  The lane was lined with big oak trees that were at least a hundred years old.  There were four in a row that were huge and sprawling just ahead of my path on the left of the sidewalk.  The light from the street lamps shown on them and all four caught my attention as time slowed down once again.  It was sudden and unexpected, but I kept walking as I felt their message.  “PEACE”, and I was at peace and filled with love again.  Time did that stretchy thing again, where I could sense that it was endless and completely accepting of me.  I saw myself from above walking past the trees for just a split second.  Then it passed and I was back in regular time seeing a car pass way to fast in the street on my right.


My first thought was, “Wow, that hasn’t happened to me since I was a kid.”  I kept the feeling of peace for just a few seconds and then it vanished as suddenly as it appeared.   It did occur to me that something was deeply wrong with me for thinking I could have an experience like that.  Maybe I was right, but how does that explain the experiences I had as an eight year old with no indication of any problems other than hyperactivity. 


I can’t explain how these experiences occurred.  I do know they were real experiences that happened without warning when I was distressed and near trees.  But, I had much more distressing times in my life when they did not occur.  I’ve always tried to find the link in my situations that may have caused them to happen, but I can’t pinpoint anything.  What I’m left with is that there are mysteries in life that we get glimpses of, if we are lucky, that point to a deeply felt experience of love and timelessness we should know is a truth available to all of us.


Apparently, these experiences are not just for saints and gurus.  If a small hyperactive girl has access to them, everyone does.



Naturally, I love everything about trees.  The shape, color, smell and feel of trees are awe inspiring to me.  I may never experience the voice of trees again, but I will never forget the messages they gave me as a gift when I needed them. 


Peace is for all of us.