Island Blog – Roots

I watch the sky. Been watching it all day as it recovers from the Big Wind, the cold one full of hail and snow and threats that came to nothing. I know that those threats did manifest in other places and while I watch the sky I think of them, those who had, and still have, to deal with power outage, destruction and the cold coming in as if it felt welcome, which, in my experience, it rarely is. Pushy bugger. I walk through the trees, the today trees, for yesterday they were bent like old women, fighting to retain a gravitational pull. They are calm today, calm with a Phew in their breaths as I congratulate them all for remaining upright in such freezing blasts, holding hold against those gusting spirits with grabbing hands, hands that can uproot an ancient pine, tall as a building and old as time without a single regret. These old folks have roots that stretch beneath tracks, beneath whole expanses of hill and heather, gnarling into fixation but always ready to move on when the threat above is told them in a story. A warning. I noticed the garden birds yesterday, no, the day before, behaving in a way more alert, more dynamic than usual. They always have to watch for the fast dive of a sparrow hawk, but this was different. They were telling me something ouchy was coming. And they were right. I noticed but already knew thanks to Google weather. Disastrous winds, destruction, high risk of death, all the usual overly ridiculous hype, thanks media, thanks news, thanks but no thanks. I have the birds. Back in the Tapselteerie days, I had the cows, the horses. Their behaviour changed as they sensed me into ‘alert’. What’s going on my friends? They might buck or run, slow or hunker but whatever they showed me told me a new story was about to show itself, demanding to be read and absorbed.

It all thinks me. The trees knew it was coming and some of them, like that big pine there, the one holding up a mate who fell, but didn’t quite, some time ago. As it fell, but didn’t quite, it compromised the rooting of the one who held it up. The holder’s roots lifted, became exposed, created an unsafety, a new unknowing, a lesser ground hold. Nonetheless, they stick together. I look and I pause to consider the new root growth that will, for sure, have been implemented as a result of this new challenge. From where I stand, and with my limited human ground level thinking, I see two trees going down, exhausted. But today I reconsider. What do I know of the intelligence of trees? Absolutely nothing. Everything they do goes on underground, a dark forbidden realm to me. But it does think me of roots. I can be afeared of storms. I loved them when I had a husband here, one who was unruffled by pretty much everything including storms. The story in the storm was all he heard, dealing with lifting caravans, rawling boats on spindly moorings, children blown into the trees, dustbins heading for another island, with a calm acceptance and a strong hand to right whatever was rightable. I am a tad unsure about my talents in the realms of unrightable. For now. But I get stronger, less fearful, more ear-aware, hearing the story in the wind, watching the birds, the animals, the trees and leaning into their wisdom and the words they say are always the same.

We have been here before, many times. So have you, you just don’t trust your spirit, your story memory, your inner strength. The world and all its fear mongering has polluted you. Breathe. Let it be. All is well and if it isn’t right now, it will be soon.

One thought on “Island Blog – Roots

  1. Glad you came through the storm safely Judy.
    We had a big old pine come down behind the house but it fell into the woodland and not across the path.
    A piece of ridge tile came off our roof and smashed just inches from our neighbour’s car.
    Two very lucky misses!!
    I find as I get older that I look more for the positives. Wish I’d always had that outlook – makes life much more pleasant- but, better late than never eh!

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