It was the first day of fall when they came to take the silver maple down.
I had loved that tree so much. So ingenious the way the previous owner had wrapped the deck around her sturdy trunk.
‘Our Shady Deck’ we used to call it. It was like being in a tree house. No one could see you. No one knew you were sitting up there except the birds.
And now she’s gone.
Just this morning I went out there to take one last look. One last photograph.
And call me crazy, but I even put my hand on her strong trunk and apologized for what was about to happen. I prayed over that big stupid tree who was making me cry and thanked her for the shade she brought, and the squirrels she entertained, and the sheer beauty of her yellow and orange leaves in the fall.
And you can laugh, or snort, or scoff, but I wouldn’t be my dad’s daughter if I didn’t love all living things, and marvel at the beauty of every tree, and respect their place in God’s world.
I was there when they made the first cut, like a mother accompanying her child through surgery. For three long hours, I endured the incessant whirring and grinding and sawing.
I saw every leaf flutter helplessly away; every branch plummet to the ground.
It’s eerily quiet now. Even the birds are not singing. She’s gone.
And now when I look up, instead of her leaves, shimmering and dancing, I see blue, blue sky instead.
And what, you might say, could possibly be wrong with that?