Whispers From the Trees: Spring in Winter

whispers from the trees Feb 19, 2024
Snow figures

By Penny Reed

The trails resembled the rough ice on a frozen pond. Not good enough to skate on but safe to walk on. I was feeling very grateful for my ice cleats as I heard them confidently picking themselves into the frozen slippery surface beneath me. The seasonally warm temperatures had wreaked havoc on the human forest paths, but all life was soaking it in and enjoying the reprieve. February can be a difficult month for northern beings. The bounty of harvest is giving way to modest rations, and the excitement of the first snow is a distant memory much like the hustle and merriment of the holidays. The cold grey days blend forming a monotonous backdrop to the drudgery of ‘getting through winter’.

The bare trees and the dead wildflower tops that poke through the crusted snow like a dead man’s fingers make the yearning for spring's arrival palpable.

I stopped in a clearing and allowed the sun’s warm rays to dance on my skin. I closed my eyes and took several deep breaths. Gentle beams of warm light entered into my being. I felt an ancient stirring, a tingling sensation that felt like dormant chloroplast cells awakening to drink in the ultraviolet nectar. I sensed an unfurling, a quiet bubbling of the hushed murmurs of spring. I told myself “Don’t fall for it - it's still winter."

I attempted to close myself from the seductive dream of winter’s end, but the forest was conspiring against me. 

A hidden woodland conductor with perfect timing cued the rambunctious sounds of courting squirrels that chased each other from limb to limb with banshee-like cries. Next came a release of airborne droppings that nearly landed on my head from a mother and child porcupine duo that were busy munching on twigs and the tender inner bark of a mature oak. Then the woodpeckers began -  at first there was one, then two, then three separate tappings each with a distinct sound as they fervently knocked for tasty morsels. The shrouded mossy maestro with the flick of his baton then brought a banditry of chickadees who chirped and jumped from branch to branch. I reached into my pack and pulled out some seeds. It didn’t take long until one landed and then another and another. I sat in wonder as I surrendered to the symphony of the forest. 

Just then I heard the trees whisper:

“Reclaim the innocence that you left behind as a child. Remember fantasy and imagination… dreams will soon become a reality.”

I laughed and thanked the trees for their wisdom. They so delicately spelled out what all of the forest was attempting to communicate. I stopped resisting the alluring tendrils of spring and embraced it with arms wide open.

I immediately felt lighter and a deep sense of joy and relief washed over me.

I laughed aloud again but this time more at myself and how my first reaction to spring was to resist it. Even though I dream and yearn for its arrival - when it first reached out to say hello, I told myself not to trust it. It made me reflect on how many other times my dreams and fantasies have come into my life, but I don’t trust or don’t acknowledge them just because I’m afraid they're not real.

What happens when we trust what we see and feel? What happens when we remember fantasy and imagination? What does it look like to reclaim your innocence?

I’m not entirely sure, but I’m excited to begin the journey and to adventure beyond the confines of myself and the ordinary world.

Walking with you, Penny

Penny hosts forest walks, Human Design readings and a Sacred Herbs Series. Check out her offerings on our website.

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