Thursday, January 5, 2012
Some years ago a large Lentisc (Mastic tree) that I could see from my kitchen window blew down in a storm. The tree was old and weak; rotting from the inside. Through subsequent seasons the hollow stub that remained rooted in the ground began to show new growth until, several seasons on from the tree’s destruction, the many new shoots thrown up by the ancient root had developed into something of a large shrub. To try to encourage the growth of a single strong new tree from the original root, I thinned the ‘shrub’ to a single shoot . In due time this sapling may grow into as fine and stately a tree as was its parent. Inevitably the new tree will one day grow old, rot from the inside and, unable to resist the ravages of future storms, be broken to its destruction. Maybe the generations-old root will again throw up new growth. Whether or not this will be the case I can not know but I can be confident that, should it be so, I shall not be around to witness it. My own shoots, my grandchildren, may, and if not themselves perhaps their shoots will enjoy something of that which I enjoyed of the tree’s parent. Should this be the case I can be comfortable in that my arboreal prunings of the past week shall not have been in vain; the circle will not have been broken.