Green tree

           I am like a green olive tree in the house of God.
                           —Psalm 52.8

For 360 million years
in the tree that is my family
I have been learning how to live,
how to live together.
I have rooted tendrils into the hardest soils,
learned to make edible life from the scratch of light,
blessed and been blessed by a sorority of fungal webs,
holding hands unseen with whole forests.
I have fed and sheltered saints and scoundrels,
held fragile nests in my million fingers
and carried untold generations of little ones in my arms.
I have learned to let go
of all the leaves I have accomplished,
mastered the mystery of energy
raised in spring and hidden deep in my roots in fall.
I have stood on mountains and city squares,
through frown of heat and fist of ice.
I have been used to make ships and gallows.
But in all, I have survived; and I have served.
And whether you come to me for shade or lumber
I will praise God in the greenness of my being.

Steve Garnaas-Holmes
Unfolding Light

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