I have never really looked into the bark of a grand old Sycamore tree until just recently. Layer upon layer of peeling, chalky skin glided under my fingertips, and I could not help but let my mind wander through the years of this tree’s growth. It is a beautiful thing, this tree. Smart. As this tree grows, it seems to purge itself of the old outer layer, and new, fresh bark emerges from underneath. The old does not stretch to accommodate new growth, and so it dies, leaving a rich, colorful texture for wandering hands to draw past.
These giants are everywhere in my neighborhood. I walk past them everyday on my walks with my daughter. They provide such a sanctuary for birds and squirrels alike. They are resilient against my dog marking his territory, as I am sure many other dogs have done. I can’t blame them. Block after block, I enjoy their bold shade. Even more than that, they create such a beautiful contrast of color against the green grass and purple mountains in the distance. Just beautiful. Scarified, they have stood the tests of our time.
And so it is with me. My old skin- the old me does not stretch to accommodate new growth. I am grateful for this beyond words. I have learned to let go of the old things that held me bound. With new growth, I break away and become more colorful, full of depth and stories. The old and the new is what makes me beautiful and attracts wandering minds to know me.
Like the Sycamore, I am grounded. Like the Sycamore, I reach heavenward tall, oh so tall. The winds can blow, the waters can rush, and the ax can fall at my branches. But I will stand firm. I am the Sycamore.