Thursday, October 14, 2010
10, El Arbol
A tree does grow in Brooklyn!
When looking for the house I live in now the most important thing was actually whether it was on a block with trees. Our block, where the houses were all erected in 1907, is one of those blocks in Brooklyn still full of trees. From the look of them they're probably not the original trees of the block. I'm imagining long-gone elms. Anyway there's a big plane tree that rises up by the top-story window I look out of as I type away on my computer. In summer its leaves remind me of green life and block the worst of the sunlight. In winter, coming soon, it's a little stark but the branches rock wonderfully during a storm. When we moved in there was also a sad little empty spot where a thin tree's sawed off stump remained. This past spring the city came and ripped out that stump and planted a small cherry tree, the first on the block to bloom this year, which seems to be so far doing fine.
Out back the neighbors have a northern magnolia, a wonderful huge tree that bursts into pink bloom the minute a whisper of spring is in the air. It took a hit with all the snow last winter, a big bough crashing to earth with the weight of snow, but the amputee seems to be holding up well despite its loss.
We haven't had frost yet in Brooklyn, so the leaves out front are mostly green, though a tired, brown-at-the-edges, read to give up color. The cold is coming soon I'm sure, and I imagine it will be a quick burst of red and yellow before the leaves all fall to the street below.
I can't bear the thought of not seeing trees outside my window. As much as I love cities, this city, I need that connection to the world below the concrete. I'm not sure how they survive here, but they do.