Old friend, you've been a wonderful companion. You've given so much more than you take. Is it any wonder my heart is broken that I may have to lose you?
Oh, I know what you're thinking: It's just a tree . . . But what a tree! When I first moved to the neighborhood fifteen years ago in the spring, glorious pink flowers cascaded throughout the slender branches. Bees buzzed in the floral extravaganza, birds perched nearby awaiting nest building times. Squirrels sat sentinel observing the lookouts where many nuts and goodies would soon be stored.
When the pastel blossoms fell as my friend made ready for leafy growth, they spread like a flowering snowfall along the driveway and porch. They paved a lovely path toward summer and all that grows. I made another friend, a male cardinal, who waited in the lower branches of the tree's embrace. When I called out that the seeds were ready, he would fly down and land upon the sundial I use as birdfeeder. He would chirp his thanks, and then the next morning, he would return singing a heavenly song that felt it was meant for only me.
Near the fall, the crisp, hard crab apples formed and then fell from you. Deer snacked through the night, awaiting the cover of darkness, their private time for family. Then the season of the snowfall and that precious tree never looked more robed in splendor. I stood in awe many many moments, my thoughts swirling with the snowflakes and listened to the silence.
Knotholes adorned your trunk; so many creatures took warmth in the shelter of your arms. Nests were built again, critters scampered and scurried as you loved them well.
Little by little, I am losing you. Large parts of who you once were came crashing down. Though you never would harm any of us, I knew it was time--time for the tree surgeon. But did he offer a ray of hope? Perhaps might I not have to lose you? You've been the tree that could. The miracle tree. You bloomed in winter once when my spirits needed to believe. You are my friend. And I will take care of you until you whisper your final farewell.