The breeze carries that familiar scent into the cab of my big blue truck. When I was a kid this Eastern Red Cedar was barely a foot tall and now it towers above my like some whispering giant. I reach out through the driver’s side window and hold onto the branch for moment. To me it was like shaking hands with an old friend and I swear that somewhere deep beneath the thick foliage there was a wooden smile. The branches are covered with the little blue berries which will not ripen until much later in summer or early fall. The cedar is thick enough to block out most of the sun and cool the heat of the day. My friend will be comforting those who pass by for hundreds of years after I am gone. And for these yet unknown kindred spirits there will be the connection of a majestic conical cedar on the edge of a gravel road. But will they know it’s secrets? Will they know that there’s a large deposit of natural clay at it’s roots where young boys used to dig and harvest clay with a stick? All of toys that couldn’t be bought were formed from the very earth itself. In fact we learned early in life that this type of tree always marked a place where the clay was easy to access.
Today as I stand beneath the stand of cedars I’m struck by how out positions are reversed. I used to tower over the tree but today I am the small one. I reached out at touched the branches one more time before climbing back into the truck and heading home.
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