Monday, April 13, 2009

The Tree

The Tree

It was the only tree he could climb - or the only one he knew he could climb. There were other trees in the park, but the branches were so high he would never reach them. But this one, just off of Crosby Road, actually had two trunks. They came together in a "V" about two-and-a-half feet from the ground. Just high enough that he could climb up and start up the one side. The other side went almost straight up - climbing that side of the tree would have to wait awhile.

But this side had a shallow enough slope that he could start shimmying up the tree. And he did. One hand, one foot, another hand, another foot. Up he went. One hand, one foot, another hand, another foot.

At first he could see the acorns on the ground, but as he climbed higher, even they could not be seen. He did see patches of dirt in the grass. Or was it patches of grass in the dirt? He could look a bit further away and see the younger kids playing in the playground on the other side of the fence.

And so it was - one hand, one foot, another hand, another foot. He continued to go further up the limb. Though he had not planned it when he started, he had decided, today, to go as high as the branch would allow him.

And he did climb higher. Now those kids on the playground equipment looked down right small. Given how small everything looked, he began to wonder how far he had climbed out on the limb. Could it have been 25 feet – no way. But it sure felt that high. Maybe he could go just a bit higher.

Wait, what was that. It was amazing how easily he could hear his mother’s voice. What had she said? Was it “Dinner!”?

There, he heard it again. “Dinner!” It was his mother – and dinner was ready. Now he had a decision to make – should he climb back down the tree or jump the three feet to the ground? Regardless, he knew the food would be worth it and the tree would be climbed another day. After all, it was the only tree he could climb.

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