The Emerald Tree

December 23, 2015

There once was a tree, that bore the most precious fruit in the world. It stood tall in a meadow with its branches spread out wide, providing an expanse of shade underneath. The tree had dark green leaves but when the sun shone upon it they would reflect an emerald-green color and that made the tree glow! It was the most beautiful tree ever.

The fruit on this tree took their time to grow, and the tree spent all its life becoming strong in order to bear that fruit, absorbing all sorts of nutrients from the earth. The first time a fruit appeared on it, this tree was very happy and it swayed here and there in the cool spring breeze. It had finally reached that point in its life that it had been waiting for, that it had worked so hard to achieve.

Everyday, this tree would collect water and food through its roots and provide it to its fruit, sometimes even sacrificing a few of its branches so that the fruit would survive even if it meant losing a branch. It would nurture it with love and care, and every time a bird or animal passed by it, it would wrap its leaves around it to hide it, after all, it was all it lived for and did not want any danger near it.

One day, clouds started to form, and the wind started to blow. At a distance lightning started to flash followed by a loud roar of thunder. The tree was really scared that the storm would come and break the fruit away from it. So it twisted its branches, and made a shelter for its fruit, even though twisting its branches hurt the tree, but nothing meant more than to save its fruit from being blown away. The storm came with all its might, and took away half its leaves and cracked some of its branches. The tree was in so much pain but it did not let the fruit go, and held it as tight as it could.

The next day when the sun came up, the tree had changed, it no longer stood as strong as before, but it was still the happiest tree around, knowing its fruit was saved from the storm. In time, the tree grew back its leaves, and continued feeding the fruit. Every night when the wind blew, the tree whistled lullabies to it and the fruit would grow through the night into a pulpier, juicier fruit than the day before.

Days passed, and the fruit started becoming heavier and heavier, and more insects, birds and other hungry animals started to come around the tree. The tree had been through some heavy storms and was gradually losing its strength, but it could not bear the feeling of letting go of the only thing it lived for. It had spent so long, and so much of its own nutrients to grow it, letting go felt worse than any storm had made it feel.

One day, an old man stopped his horse under the tree, to take an afternoon nap. As he lay back on the big tree trunk, he felt his back get damp. This old man had wandered the world and had great knowledge of all sorts. The man realized what the tree was going through, and why it was weeping. He put his palm against the trunk and started to pet it. “You’ve lived a long life, and have been a source of shade for so many people, wouldn’t you want that there be more of your kind in this meadow and beyond?” He said to the tree. “I waited years and years to bear this fruit, and have given it so much of my love, how can I let go?” Wept the tree. “The fruit is now ripe, it must leave you in order to reach a patch of soil where it can sow its seeds, where it can get sunlight and water from the rain”, explained the old man, “and if you hold on too long, the fruit will rot and the insects will come and take away the seeds. You don’t want that now, do you?” The tree realized that although it had taken care of the fruit, it was time to let it go, to let it grow. The tree dried its trunk and the man rested his back against it and fell asleep.

A slight breeze started to blow, and some dried leaves floated down on the mans face, awakening him from his sleep. As he opened his eyes he saw the bright-colored fruit fallen right between his legs. “What is this?” He asked the tree. “You have been very kind to me, and have made me realize how important it is that I let my fruit grow in its own soil,” said the tree in a humbled voice, “you seem to be a very wise man, and have seen so much of the world. Please take this fruit, and find for it a new home, a place where it will be happy and grow strong, stronger than me. A place where it can be a source of shade to people who need it. ” The man promised the tree that he would find for it a suitable place to grow and gave the tree a big hug, as wide as his arms could go and bade it farewell.

The man did as he promised, and found a fertile piece of land near his home, so that he could water it and protect it from danger. Eventually the seeds from the fruit sprout and started to grow. It was very hard at first, cracking out of the hard shell, only to find that it had to make its way through the earth to reach the sun. This new plant was taking its first steps to grow. Pushing and shoving through the soil, it remembered how much nicer it was back inside the fruit, and wished it could go back. As it split through the earth into the open, it met the sun for the first time, a bright sharp glare shone upon it and made it warm. It had never seen such bright light nor felt this warm. It remembered how cool and shady it used to be under its beautiful emerald tree, and wished it could go back.

Days passed and the plant started to make its way higher and higher up into the sky. One day while it was swaying in a gust of wind, it suddenly noticed that the sun had disappeared in the day time, and a rumbling sound shook it all the way down to its roots. The wind started to blow faster and faster, and the plant did not know what to do. The man came rushing to it and quickly stuck a stick right next to it and wrapped the plant around it, tying it at several points in order for it to stay in the ground. The man left and so did the storm, eventually, after having done its damage to the other plants around it. The next day, as the sun came up, the man walked over to the plant. “You have nothing to be afraid of,” he explained, “I have tied you to a branch that came from the tree you came from. You can lean on it and hug it tightly when the wind blows again. The tree gave me its branch just for you.”

Years passed by, and the plant grew into a tree and like the tree it came from, it too had dark green leaves that glowed emerald in the sun light. It too went through many storms and the harsh rays of the sun, but without it, the tree would have never turned out as beautiful as the tree in the meadow it came from!

 

 

Amidst the hustling bustling of our busy lives, are signs all around us. They are right in front of our eyes, yet our worries and anxieties make us blind, and we continue looking for help elsewhere. Its only when we stop, just momentarily and look at the world around us, that we notice, each and every creation on this planet is helping us in ways we never thought of. One such example is that of the trees.

Trees grow around us, providing us with fruit, shade, and most importantly the paper we use in so many places. However, the trees are there to teach us another very important lesson about life. That of growing up!

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