Friday, April 30, 2010

tree spirits

The Other Kingdoms

Consider the other kingdoms. The
trees, for example, with their mellow-sounding
titles: oak, aspen, willow.
Or the snow, for which the peoples of the north
have dozens of words to describe its
different arrivals. Or the creatures, with their
thick fur, their shy and wordless gaze. Their
infallible sense of what their lives
are meant to be. Thus the world
grows rich, grows wild, and you too,
grow rich, grow sweetly wild, as you too
were born to be.
~ Mary Oliver ~ (from The Truro Bear and Other Adventures)

Oh my! What a joy it was to discover all these tree stump spirits in Lynn Canyon Park while hiking with my sister! Although I often feel connected to the spirits of the trees while in nature, it was easy to personify these stumps because they looked human-like in their appearances with their eyes, noses and mouths :~) We felt drawn to acknowledge and honor these ancient tree beings that had been logged at the turn of the century.
In my last mentorship session with Momo we vocalized the sounds that we imagined the sycamore and cedar trees were creating if they had voices we could hear... I couldn't resist imitating the language I imagined the tree stump with the crazy hair to be speaking - and what came out of my mouth was 'glossolalia.' I loved the surprise of coming closer to it in the dance and being able to see it's mouth opening deep into the earth - imagining the wise stories it could tell... In my butoh workshops with Momo she has asked us to dance the way another being might like to see us dance, and here, today, I was hoping I was speaking the language the tree wanted to hear, and allowing it to feel acknowledged in some way for it's presence...

My sister Bev also shared how she had done a photography project in art school years ago focussing on upturned roots of trees - and how to her they represent such meaning - the courage to expose one's deepest hidden self, the roots of one's being... honoring the depth of this uprooted tree, exposing it's depths so magnificently...
One of the stumps had a single eye (rock) in it's eye socket, and we felt compelled to give it sight in both eyes... although challenged with that as the forest floor was covered in peat moss with few rocks available and the one we did find didn't 'fit'...

The tree below looked like it had been touched up with charcoal graffiti at some point in the past and it looked quite 'saucy' to us, so Bev couldn't resist giving it a kiss... again, hoping these tree beings were feeling appreciated... We imagined it thinking "I have had this silly little grin on my face for many years and FINALLY someone is stopping to give me a hug and a kiss!"

Thank you you for viewing / reading this blog... I hope that it may inspire you in some way - perhaps to listen to, play with and honor the spirits of the trees where you live? :~)


Music by: Deuter
See my butoh mentor's inspiring blog here, where she focused the whole month of April on dances that connected to, and celebrated trees: Maureen 'Momo Freehill

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