The oaks and the pines, and their brethren of the wood, have seen so many suns rise and set, so
many seasons come and go, and so many generations pass into silence, that we may well wonder
what ‘the story of the trees’ would be to us if they had tongues to tell it, or we ears fine enough to
One thing’s for sure mom, like the brethren of the wood, has seen so many suns rise and set, so many seasons come and go …
She has witnessed ninety-one, going on ninety-two, winters (mom was born Christmas Day, 1919), springs, summers, and falls.
And, yes, her world still has seasons.
Her ninety-one years on this planet have sharpened all five of her senses that are indelibly linked to the changes the four seasons bring.
She does not mince words when describing seasons or the weather.
Summer is too hot and too bright. Winter is too cold and too dark. Fall and spring are not too hot, not too bright, not too cold and not too dark. Fall and spring are “just right” … mom’s words for perfect.
Mom’s heating and air conditioning bills attest to my commitment to try and make all the seasons “just right” for her.
As for mom’s take on the weather, when it rains or snows, it’s too wet. When it’s not raining or snowing, it’s too dry. Thunder is too loud and shaky, and lightning blinks and is way too bright.
And that’s it … except for spring and fall. Rain, even if it comes equipped with thunder and lightning, is encouraged and applauded.
For mom, springtime is for rejuvenation, jubilation and celebration. She instinctively knows everything and everyone made it through the too cold and too dark winter season and that she is ready to rejoice and embrace the “just right” new season with open arms and warm heart. It is the season of Resurrection, rebirth and promise.
I believe spring is mom’s happiest season … springtime in Virginia that is!
For the last couple of weeks, mom has talked non-stop about what she sees on our drive to and from adult day care.
“Look at that, Tom! Look at that tree! It is putting its clothes back on! And so are all those others! Can you believe it?!”
“What color are their clothes, mom?”
“Green! A wonderful green! All of those trees were so sticky when they were cold … just sticks (in the winter). Now they look great!” Do you see those trees? Don’t they look great?!”
“They should be in a magazine, don’t you think so? They were nothing but naked and out in the cold. Now they are putting all of their clothes back on. Look at that … they are all wearing green. Just look at that!”
“I love it, mom! Everything is right with the world.”
“I love it, too! I just really love it! Look at that one and that one, Tom (pointing to trees on both sides of the road) … they are so big now! Have you ever seen trees so big in your life?!”
“No mam, never have. I’ll say it again, everything is right with the world … just right … that’s what it is, mom. Just right!”
Out of nowhere, mom starts singing one of her favorite songs of late, Bringing in the Sheaves, but this time she substitutes leaves for sheaves.
She is singing at the top of her voice and I am singing right along with her, “Bringing in the leaves, bringing in the leaves, we will come rejoicing, bringing in the leaves.”
And, I believed that if I only had ears fine enough to understand, the trees were singing in perfect harmony with us.
There was not a doubt in my mind that mom was hearing them loud and clear.