[ musical score: Chorale for Pat by Phillip Sheppard ]
Thank you for letting me swing from your branches for 15 years; those memories are still precious for me. The black bark along your trunk is splendid to behold, it really is. The sun radiates from your crown and revealing the delicate veins in each yellowing leaf as I run my finger down each blade; even the stipules. My obscured silhouetted body with its fingers, long and dainty, and lovingly fondling a small bunch of your turning leaves and branches. They are so precious to me. I can feel the pulse of your love emanate from deep within your heartwood.
I am reminded of this deep valley we are ensconced in, tucked away so deeply in. From the porch I can look up into the mountains that surround us, and still feel remnants of our soul playing in the same plane of our conscious awareness. The whole air is filled with us. Your beef stew has a perfumed smell so distinctive and so real to me, that it permeates through my whole being. There's the sound of an echo of a swing somewhere and a child's laughter playing over and over again in our minds eardrum, so loud it can be heard all over our private little lush valley. I remember how your countenance had shown upon me, from your physical human self. That laughter of yours was like medicine to me, like warm oil being poured down my soul.
Far off to the right, there's a gondola that used to take us to the top during those long winters. We'd play in the snow, and hold each other and copying each others faces. I was only 5 years old. I have always been five. Near that gondola is a soccer field with an old worn soccer ball somewhere on it scuffed with my five year old footprint kick. Swirls of maple leaves are blown around by chestnut scented winds from far off somewhere. I have no neighbors. Just my fading autumn J-momma and our little paradise, with one great autumn oak nestled in a ditch.
The tree remembers. The oldest living tree recorded is called the Methuselah tree, and it has lived thousands of lifetimes, such as you. Your roots run so deep into my heart, mind, and soul. You always seem to know what I know, even before I know it.
Taking the next step requires me to cross over to the other side. I have always been afraid to leave your warm embrace..... You were always with me when I was with the others...... You supported my other habits because you knew the next step for me was necessary, but you stayed with me.
You are the reason of my entire being....