These squally grey days of late have managed to finally strip the Ash tree and now it stands unadorned and open to the unrelenting elements. Still, it is beautiful. Like an elegant candelabra on a mahogany dining table, crisp white linen, the hiss and spit of a lively fire in the grate, the promise of good food to come.
This tree is my food as I stand at the kitchen counter measuring out the flour to bake the cake. I could be the tree. Some days I know I am the tree. Rooted yet naked. Strong though vulnerable. Always bending to try to accommodate the winds that blow through my soul. I do my best.
You have to be bigger these days. More resilient. Inventive. You have to extend yourself beyond the comfort zone. I do. But there are days when it all seems impossible. When you want to run for safety. To seek shelter, to be a child again; your mother's lap, a snuggle into her neck, that faint powdered smell teasing your nostrils, flour still clinging to her hands like thin paint.
Imagine, I still miss that. Maybe I never grew up. Got on with it. But how you one forget these things? Not crave them? Desire a reprieve? Of time...
This is why this pen has become my instrument. It ekes out of me that what is paramount to my existence and so, I measure the ingredients to lure something of significance out onto the page and all this time my eyes are drawn yet again to the bare tree opening itself up to me, its arms out wide as if in prayer, as if in understanding, as if in love. Nothing more.