It’s not like we lived in the dessert. (Just the suburbs. ) Our development was built up after acres of land were scraped free of all vegetation so that hundreds of houses could be tapped together. Hankie-sized yards were sewn in and dotted with a tree or two. Except for our lot.
When we moved into that house I told myself it didn’t matter. Trees are a lot of trouble (someone told me this once.) The yard was too small for a really large tree. Besides, we could always plant our own. But we never did. We just lived without trees; without shade, songbirds and leaf-filtered light.
Then we moved to Eastern Tennessee. We moved in the fall. As we drove along Interstate 40 past Nashville, the road began to rise and fall before us, drawing us closer to the Smoky Mountain foothills. In every direction I saw rich fall color lavished across the treetops.
Our new (temporary) home was a town home complex where we would live while we waited for someone to purchase our treeless Texas abode. On an exploratory outing, we were greeted by this.
And as I walked beneath those outstretched limbs and inhaled that heady amalgam of earth and living wood, seven years were redeemed.