Welcome! This is a place to share how we celebrate & deepen our relationship to Nature. Here you will find stories, images, & ideas about wilderness, human nature, & soulfulness. Drawing from the experiences of everyday living, the topics on this blog include: forays into the natural world, the writing life, community service, meditation, creativity, grief & loss, inspiration, & whatever else emerges from these. I invite you on this exploration of the wild within & outside of us: the inner/outer landscape.

Friday, March 26, 2021

a bustling crowd of loving trees

the other day something happened to me.


i’ve tried to explain it once, twice, to trusted others. to no avail. 


i’ve heard others say things similar to what i experienced. 

heck, i have probably said similar things in the past. 

actually, i know i have said similar things in the past, even as recently as last autumn when i wrote about a deciduous tree who welcomed me (http://tealarborstories.blogspot.com/2019/11/the-welcoming-tree.html)


trees as sentient beings. not a new idea, nor a new experience. 


but what happened the other day felt completely different, unprecedented. perhaps because we are in unprecedented times:


(…it may take me a few tries, over time, to really articulate this clearly…)


as i stepped onto the dirt road that leads me to my forested trail – where the protected area is to the left and a few rural properties are to the right -


i was stopped. by the sea of trees on my starboard side.

out for a vigorous hike but suddenly just stopped on the road, agape at this crowd of “not-forest” forest trees.


for a few seconds

they were not just trees, not just alive, not just the same guys i pass every day, not just ecological beings, not just redcedars and douglas firs, not just those whose lives i honor in as many ways as i can think to do



these trees became sentient. beyond sentient: perfect, brilliant, intelligent, healthy, my kin, my people – tall, strong, sturdy companions


they told me that:

they are here,

they are not sick, 

they intend to stand by me: caressing, holding, nourishing, protecting, remaining

they will guide, soothe, inspire, instruct, envelop, nurture


farther along the trail - wind through boughs became soft, gentle giggling


all of this was palpable in a swift flush of image, sensation, insight


and in my overwhelm of feeling, all i could utter - as i brought my hands together at my heart - was: 


“thank you”

(Orig. posted Mar 2020)

All blog images created & photographed by Jennifer J. Wilhoit unless otherwise noted. Please circulate images with photo credit: "©2021 Jennifer J. Wilhoit/TEALarbor stories. All Rights Reserved."