the family tree

Whatever happened, happened a long time ago.  Before you were alive.  Before he was dead.  It happened in the family tree but like in winter, it’s hard to tell which part has died.  All the branches look the same, soft and sparkly in the winter, twisted and soft in the midnight light of summer.  We all see the tree differently in different light, seasons, different elements paint it’s long and sturdy arms. The transgenerational pattern of white, green, brown, black, tree-colors come and go like the patterns of the weather and seasons of the heart.  We fight, branches are cut off, new branches grow, different phases of the living thing—branches in the sky and roots in the ground.  Sky-father and mother-earth, all of our beliefs rest in this tree.  Whatever happened, some say it began in the trunk, in the branches, or in the veins of leaves, arriving as if by train, harsh elements propelled forward.  Some say by saw, by fire, by rain.  It happened before we could name it or give it a feeling, a symbol, a mood.  We sometimes still see the pink elephant, the things we won’t name, slip in and out of the jungle of connections between us, between the vines of our father and his sister around the ferns of our grandmother and her children.  And that’s just the way things are, so we say.  We live and we die and we don’t figure it out but the tree is still alive.  The family moves on through winter and summer.  Spring and autumn.  The tree still stands watered by love and the knowledge that although it might not see it branches on all sides, there is love from all sides, connection.  There are also things that happened a long long time ago to plant this family tree, this line of origin, these blessings of family, prayer, and love.

A Wind Has Blown The Rain Away and Blown

“a wind has blown the rain away and blown
the sky away and all the leaves away,
and the trees stand.  I think i too have known
autumn too long

                  (and what have you to say,
wind wind wind—did you love somebody
and have you the petal of somewhere in your heart
pinched from dumb summer?
                            O crazy daddy
of death dance cruelly for us and start

the last leaf whirling in the final brain
of air!)Let us as we have seen see
doom’s integration………a wind has blown the rain

away and the leaves and the sky and the
trees stand:
             the trees stand.  The trees,
suddenly wait against the moon’s face.”  

ee cummings

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