Talking about Trees, I was in the library this morning and came across this piece of writing that I thought was too beautiful not to share.
In Zambia, between the towns of Ndola and Kitwe, stands the Chichele Mofu Tree in the middle of a dual carriageway. According to local tradition it is an Ngulu, that is to say a house of spirits in which the spirit of the long-dead chief lives.
This tree was declared a national monument in 1976 to commemorate National Forestry Day and at its foot stands a plaque with this anonymous poem.
Ye who would pass by and raise your hand against me,
Harken ere you harm me.
I am the heat of your hearth on cold winter nights,
The friendly shade screening you from the summer sun;
And my fruits are refreshing draughts
Quenching your thirst as you journey on.
I am the beam that holds your house,
the board of your table,
the bed on which you lie
and the timber that builds your boat.
I am the handle of your hoe and the door of your
homestead, the wood of your cradle and the shell
of your coffin.
I am the gift of God and the friend of man.
Ye who passes by, listen to my prayer ...
HARM ME NOT.
Reading something like this puts me in touch with the real stuff of life.