Saturday, August 17, 2019

The Peach Tree

In the front corner of my back yard, beside the house, there's a dying tree. It's a peach tree, but thanks to fungus, it's never made good peaches in the four years we've been here. It barely grows leaves anymore, just a few bushy bunches here and there. Mostly, it's branches are are bare all year. I've been thinking I'd cut it down, but haven't ever gotten around to getting someone to do it because it's not really a priority.

I can see this peach tree from my office window. That, a power pole, the juniper bush beside it, and the neighbors rusty barn roof are pretty much all I can see from that window. Since I work at 6:30am, I watch the sky grow light each morning from that window. While working the other morning, my house quiet, I began to notice the sounds of birds chirping and singing. The house is very solid and the windows are double pane, so I don't hear much outside noise and I've really never noticed this noise before. But, there it was, about a dozen little birds perching on the bare branches of the naked peach tree, hopping from branch to branch, chirping and singing to one another.

In the still of the morning, I took a moment to watch them and listen to their singing, and I felt so much inner quiet. I don't know what the little birds are, and I can't seem to capture a picture of them on the branches because my windows are dirty and when I open the office window they fly away. But whatever they are, out there, minding their own business, they gave me something I can't ever seem to find on my own... calm.

There was this thing, the tree, that I had planned to destroy without much thought about it, being of use to these cute little critters. And, to me, too. The tree of was of use to me, because seeing the little birds fluttering around it's branches made me happy. Such a simple thing and maybe it was the moment or the quiet, but I began to realize how much I take for granted and how many things I let pass me by without stopping to really see them. So many little things that could bring me a little bit of calm or peace of mind.

I won't be cutting down the tree. I'm starting to like it, even though it's not serving the purpose it was grown for. I think I may hang some bird feeders, instead.