The Tree Atop the Hill

In a time when gardens were carefully crafted, and people thought highly of their care, there was a tree that stood atop a tall hill. It had been planted long ago by the droppings of a wren, and as it grew, it came to take great solace in the knowledge that it was so high, so lofty, so wide-scoped in all that it could see. In fact, this was the tree’s only solace, and so prevalent were its thoughts, that it believed everything that was beneath it in fact was beneath it in all other ways, too. For there could be nothing so great, nothing so marvelous, then standing firm above all the rest of everything.

    The tree itself grew to be a fine shape, perfectly contoured in the essence of tree-ness. So lovely, in fact, that when a man came upon it, he felt it would be the perfect tree to make a present for his wife and her garden. And so, the man sought to unburden the tree’s roots by means of a spade.

    The tree, oblivious to the man’s intentions, assumed that such digging was merely a means of respect paid to so fine a specimen of growth. Until, that was, the tree felt the breeze upon its exposed roots and felt itself descending the hill mound. Furious, the tree fought to thrash the man, but without a wind about it, it could do no such thing. Thoughts of horrid thinking filled the tree’s mind, such as: how could the man dare to move a thing as great as itself, and: what was a tree but for its ability to survey all below it.

    Once planted in the garden, however, the tree found itself surrounded by other growing things. The visiting birds came and nestled in its branches as they paid their daily homage in a way that the wind had never allowed them to do atop the hill. Too, several other trees, some gnarled, some sprightly, grew about and were, the tree discovered, easy to converse with—for they had much in common.

    In very little time at all, the tree took root again, and, instead of lofty thinking, did so with delight.

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