Thuja spp.

Dear Cedar,

My, oh my. Thank you, Grandmother, for being so confidently and magnificently yourself. The gifts you have bestowed upon the people are huge, just like you. The stories we have told about and around you are countless. Our indigenous brothers and sisters were held by you all throughout their livee, from the cradleboard to lining the grave with your mats, with the giving of your medicine in between.

When I moved to the Northwest of North America at age 19 and saw you, plicata, in the wild for the first time, I gasped then teared up as I came into view of your old growth. This is the Tree of Life, I thought. This is the Tree of Spirit. This is the tree that would enchant anyone into lovingly protecting our planet.

But not even you could do that, and if you couldn’t, who will? I watched thousands upon thousands of your beautiful wood cut down in swaths- clearcut and carried away. This is how you break the soul of the world, by treating such a sacred being as you, Cedar, like this. All the life you were supporting, including your own— gone, desecrated, terminated.

I offer this little letter right here, right now, to tell you that you deserve so much more from us, and there are many who would never treat you like that. Blessed be your boughs that hang like feathers of an enormous perched bird watching over the world, giving of yourself until the end of time….

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