“You know me, I think there ought to be a big old tree right there. And let’s give him a friend. Everybody needs a friend.” 

― Bob Ross

As part of my recent writing course, we were asked to write a letter to a piece of furniture, give it a voice, let it respond. I wasn’t feeling particularly enamoured with becoming Shirley Valentine and giving my sofa a voice or my microwave a voice.

Instead, I focused on a picture I have hanging in my guest bedroom which is, when not in use, also my meditation room. Adorned with images on the wall of Buddhas, calm affirmations and canvas pictures of my travels around the world but amidst them all is this one picture of a solitary tree which I love. This is it below:

…..and these are the letters exchanged between myself and “Tree”……..

Dear Tree

I have been staring at you for the past 10mins. 

You stand alone, on that hill, with hair like white candyfloss, fluffy but motionless, standing confident and tenancious against the wars of climatic conditions that throw themselves upon you. I sometimes wonder if you are lonely like I can be sometimes, despite the throngs of people that often surround you in all seasons. I notice your bark is weathered but you have seen a lot in your time and would have a thousand stories to tell and wisdom to impart. I’d love to hear them.

When I look at you I feel peace and calm and even though your branches are full of softness the overhead sky is foreboding and gunmetal grey. I’d like to find you and sit with you one day, is that ok? Could you shelter me? and I can tell you everything that’s on my mind. I want to feel the energy in your skin that depicts times gone by. 

To look up into your crown and be enveloped by your wispy woven arms below would be wonderful. I’d be hidden but not secreted, safe but not imprisoned. I want you to be my safe place, my sanctuary of hush and reflection. I will protect you too. I will visit you and talk to you more often and I will never leave you again.

Your friend, Lois

Dear Lois

Thank you for your letter. 

I haven’t seen you for a long time. You used to come and sit with me, meditating for many days but then you stopped coming in. I haven’t changed, as you can see!! 

I would love for you to come and sit with me though. You don’t need to be lonely. I am always here, like an old friend on a bench hoping to hear your news and your worries. 

I would protect you as best as I can with my “candyfloss hair” as you call it because sometimes even though you are strong and independent, you need protecting too, I see that. 

You’re like me: solitary but much loved and people flock to you, also like me. We are solitary but loved. We are one. 

Keep coming back to me and sitting and meditating. It does you good and I see a change in your eyes and your soul. And I miss you. Have peace.

Love, Tree.

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