I finally found a photo of the Mother Tree at ground level. For those that don’t know, this is a tree in the redwood forest I lived in when I was really little. I figure something like this is in order after the awfulness in the last post.
[Photo: A little out of focus, with a light leak in the upper left corner. A large redwood tree, including the ground area. Some piece of an iteration is visible hanging down on the left.]
I hadn’t uploaded this one because I thought the light leak made it look bad. This was before those were trendy. But now I like this one a good deal. It shows the bark texture better than any of them.
My brother drove me up there and I curled up right in the roots where the tree met the ground and just sat there listening. It felt almost like the tree was singing. Not out loud, just an intense, deep treeish clarity that struck me as song-like. And I stayed there and listened a long time. Momo-style.
Momo listened to everyone and everything, to dogs and cats, crickets and tortoises — even to the rain and the wind in the pine trees — and all of them spoke to her after their own fashion.
Many were the evenings when, after her friends had gone home, she would sit by herself in the middle of the old stone amphitheater, with the sky’s starry vault overhead, and simply listen to the great silence around her.
Whenever she did this, she felt she was sitting at the center of a giant ear, listening to the world of the stars, and she seemed to hear soft but majestic music that touched her heart in the strangest way. On nights like these, she always had the most beautiful dreams.
Those who still think listening isn’t an art should see if they can do half as well.
~~Michael Ende, Momo