My morning walk to the deli today had a sweet sort of melancholy feel to it. The hum of hidden bugs were nowhere to be found, leaves that were left behind by landscapers sat frozen along the curb, the shattered remains of a Heineken bottle glistened in the mid December morning light and every breath I took was evident in the air around me. As if it were possible to see my humanness in each exhale that shot forth from my being. Other than a few cars driving by I remained alone with my thoughts and frosty air to keep me company. Much of it was surreal but I’m just basing this theory on the piano music I was listening to on my Ipod. Music makes life much more surreal, if only for a moment. I think we need those moments every now and then, to make sure our hearts don’t harden too much. Because life has a way of hardening us, often times to a point we cannot return from.
One thing strikes me most this time of year and that’s how bare trees remind me of people. Everyday people. Ordinary people. Kinda like you and I, figuratively speaking of course. Some tall and broad with many branches, twigs, nooks and crannies. Some short and squat with thick skin and prickly branches. There are others that are hollow and weak. Its inhabitants have all but forsaken them to the wood burning stoves that litter the quaint little corner of the world I live in. They all have one thing in common this time of year; they are all exposed. We can see them for what they truly are. During the tranquil months of summer and the majesty of fall we only see the outward and all but forget what’s underneath. Like the tree, people have their seasons. Seasons of reaping and harvesting, laughter and friendship, loneliness and confusion, goodness and mercy, cruelness and anger. Like the tree, we need to be nourished with good things in order to survive. For without the basics of life; food, water, oxygen we cannot live. Is this really all we need? Does not mercy and kindness, goodness and love have no place in a world such as ours? Do we not need these basics of life to truly live? Like the tree, without nourishment we will die. But without kindness, people die on the inside. Without it our trunks begin to crack, our limbs wilt and the beauty that once was life has all but fled from before us. Like the tree in full bloom, we can’t see the condition of other peoples hearts because we wear our own shields to blind others from the truth that we feel inside.
I won’t lie to you. This is the first time in about three years I sat down to write anything. My hands hovered over the keyboard in fear like a man jumping into shark infested waters. There is a slight trepidation to all of this writing nonsense. Because emotions are greatly involved, one must focus all attention on delivering something others can relate to. If we cannot relate to one another than it’s all for naught and I might as well cap the pen, put it back in my pocket protector and hit the road. But it’s OK, words can help turn someones frown upside down or it make things worse. At least it helps me. With the wonderful Christmas holiday upon us I implore all of you (Myself included) to maybe go that extra mile for someone. A smile, a kind word, these simple things mean more than silver and gold. These are things that will last. These are things that warm our hearts after walking on frost.