So Venerable a Neighbor

As I mentioned in January, we often keep our live Christmas tree up in the house for quite a long time compared to most households. This year, today was the day that it left the house to become habitat along the back strip of our property. It seemed to be time: needles were dropping when it was touched, sap was flowing (the tree was at its most aromatic this past week or so), the bits that had greened up had now browned and stopped growing. And the time seems right for animals and insects, who are awakening soon to spring, to discover this safe, sheltering place.

Thank you, tree, for being part of our lives for a quarter of the year, for your beauty, colour, scent … for your presence with us.

The 2014 Christmas Tree: A Retrospective:

We brought you home from a family owned cut-your-own tree farm a few towns away from us, on a very windy and cold Sunday, 7 December. By 9 December, the snow had melted from you and you were up in your spot in the family room, ornamented with lights and decorations:


Here you are on Christmas morning!


A few special ornaments:




You were radiant on 21 January, which, as it turned out, was exactly two months before you left us for the great outdoors again.


Some of your new growth, on 24 February!


Still fully decorated on 9 March, 3 months after you came home with us.


That was the day I removed the decorations, leaving just the lights and the tree topper for a couple more days.


Here you are in all your needled green glory, this morning, ready for your short trip to the yard.


And here is where you were; it looks so empty now.


Now you are finally in your new place, perhaps a home or a hideout for someone who needs it.



You can live for years next door to a big pine tree, honored to have so venerable a neighbor, even when it sheds needles all over your flowers or wakes you, dropping big cones onto your deck at still of night.

~Denise Levertov

One Comment on “So Venerable a Neighbor

  1. So sad…and bittersweet…but what a tradition. You are the only ones we know who keep a tree up for so long!

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