Monday, December 28, 2009


When my kids were little, I told them everyone in the world has their own personal tree somewhere. I don’t remember why I made this up. Maybe I was trying to get them to look more carefully at trees. In any case, the idea of having their own tree intrigued them, then seemed to start gnawing at them. What if they never found their trees?

Eventually I tried figuring out how many trees there are in the world (approximately, of course, since right now the parks department is uprooting a diseased elm, developers outside Saginaw are bulldozing a few acres, the Christmas tree growers are replanting, etc etc). I started at the corner park, which is fairly modest, and got to fifty-three, but then gave up when I came to one of the pathways in, which is crawling with trees and tree-like bushthings that I don’t know if they qualify or what.

I can only conclude that spread out over the face of the earth are five trillion trees, give or take a few. So, the chance any of us would ever find our trees seems remote. Luckily in the seven years or so since I had this brilliant idea, the kids appear to have forgotten it completely, and moved on to finding other important stuff of the teenage variety, like a boyfriend who calls when he says he will.

But I haven’t forgotten the tree idea. It’s romantic and quixotic, and I am in fact always on the lookout. I will let you know when I find my tree. I hope it will be an Laurel or Oak or something flowering, but I’m afraid it may turn out to be a bushthing.


Anonymous said...

I saw something recently that indicated that there was a ratio of 10:1 trees to people.

I'd like to think that my tree is an aromatic cypress in the Presido overlooking the Pacific. But I think it's likely the reincarnation idea of everyone being a slave or king. More likely my tree is a dwarf orange being tended by a cat lady in Far Rockaway.

Kass said...

This is My Tree
It was nice to find it.

SarahJane said...

Bob, I hope the cats won't pee on you.
Kass - cool tree!

Ron. said...

Ron.'s Tree

SarahJane said...

Ron., pray, what nature of tree is that?

Ron. said...

Phish Tree, though not native, a transplant to Coventry VT

Dave said...

@Ron - that's quite an installation! I love it.

Jasmine said...

I love this idea, maybe I'm greedy but I love the idea of my own personal forest, I'm happy to start small though. I've given trees as birthday gifts (olives and cherry are always well received), I've planted trees in my garden and a nature reserve, I've donated art to raise funds for reforestation but I'm not even close to an avenue or small covett. Maybe I should make it a lifetime goal!

Related Posts with Thumbnails