A friend told me recently that the acronym “LOL” doesn’t carry the same meaning for her that it does for so many others. “For me,” she said, “it means ‘Labor of Love.'” She told me this not long after I’d given her a few dishcloths that I’d knitted as a birthday gift, and I realized that her interpretation fit that occasion as well.
I’ve written often about how much I love trees, a love that has, over time, grown to unreasonable proportions. I don’t know why I love them so much, and as much as I’ve thought about and tried to describe it, I cannot adequately sum up what it is about trees that can actually distract me from what’s going on around me. For me, it’s always been a question of not seeing “the forest for the trees.” Sure, a forest IS a lovely thing to behold, especially from a distance or a great height…all that lushness, that density that, depending upon the light, reflects every shade of green imaginable, is a formidable thing to see. But there is so much more to it than that, and it all has to do with what each and every single tree contributes to the bigger picture.
For, without trees, there’d be no forest. There’d be no great swatches of green across the landscape, no habitats for wildlife, no sanctuaries for the rest of us. And that cannot help but impart great value and importance to even the lowliest of seedlings that protrudes from a decaying acorn.
So yes, this book was indeed a “Labor of Love.” For I cannot stand beneath a single tree and not hear something it has to say, not feel the need to respond in the only way I can…through words…which are essentially the trees that, together, form the forest that is a piece of writing…