Monday, November 30, 2009

In The Woodland

Whose woods are these? I think I know. I have been here before, almost one year ago, if my memory serves. Silently standing all together, as a flock of elegant birds with feathers of fir - shoulders touching, wings folded - this woodland, like all woodlands, quietly bids me welcome.
I am Lucy in the wardrobe. Looking this way and that, I gently push aside boughs of green needles, and enter in. All outside sound evaporates to nothingness, and I am alone. Fistfuls of white light, man’s recreation of the stars, drape and swag above me, casting a surreal glow over this most unusual forest. I run my fingers through emerald arms, bury my face in soft branches. I am intoxicated by the overwhelming smell of winter.
One by one, each tree lets me pass, scores of silent beryl eyes marking my movements as I search for the one I came to find.
Soon, far down another long viridian hallway, I see him, off to the side, regal in his perfection. Tall as an ent, pure magic, his branches seem to wave me over. I stand before him, looking up to the place where a star should be, and softly whisper, “are you the one”? Perhaps it was the wind, for it was strong that night, but I am certain the great tree bowed.

We bore him home by moonlight to his place of honor by the grey stone fireplace and he stands there now, wearing his robes of tinsel and ruby, gold teardrops and fairy light. He presides over Christmas with a dignified beauty, a grace afforded but a few of his kind, trees chosen to share a small portion of the wild wood’s mystery with those of us who dwell indoors. He greets us every morning with his lush sparkle, his holiday perfume. He is the crowning jewel of our festivity, the guardian of our tokens of love for one another - those gaily wrapped boxes nestled under his boughs.
Once again, we are charmed by his presence.

Painting above by Sophia Elliott


  1. o, oh. OH, how beautiful! Your moving writing takes me back to anivht of -30 with a full moon rising and the two of us having selected the perfect tree carrying our frozen solid trophy home, taking great care not to snap off a frozen twig.
    While the silent pink moon looked n and sparkled off the snow.

  2. Oh yes, Christmas is coming softly!
    Writing this, behind me crackles a warm and aromatic fire, the dog snores and the family rests...
    Enjoy the weeks ahead, the lights amidst the dark skies, and all these wonderful smells!
    Enjoy your magnificent tree, I can see it standing, ours is still out there, waiting for us!
    Greetings to you all!


  3. Hi Pamela,

    Your writing is beautiful and I love the magical painting.

    I hope that you had a happy Thanksgiving and may you have a great weekend


  4. The perfect tree has found it's way home...xv

  5. Hi
    Both the painting and the writing are wonderful !


  6. Oh Pamela! This is perfect. What a beautiful paean to the noble Christmas Tree.

    I think I'm going to have to give up on my ridiculous idea of having everything finished and perfect for Christmas! I can feel my self~induced panic beginning to nibble at my toes.

    I think a good~enough~Christmas should be my aim this year!

  7. Oh the scent is marvelous, isn't it. Enjoy every moment with your tree. Thank you for once again bringing us along on your lovely journey.

  8. Lovely, as usual. I love the sights and smells of Christmas trees that you've captured here. To be Lucy going through the wardrobe...that's the magic of the holiday.

    Thank you!

  9. There is magic is bringing the tree home as you so aptly reminded us with this post.

  10. What a beautiful essay.
    I always think that the coming of winter has something magic about it.
    Love to Edward and Apple.

  11. How perfectly enchanting! I could picture myself right there, walking beside you in the silvery moonlight, looking for the perfect tree. And then, sitting in an armchair by the great stone fireplace, hypnotized by its dancing flames, cup of hot chocolate in hand, the book I would be meaning to read by the twinkling lights of the tree, forgotten in my lap.
    Thank you for transporting me to the magical land of Christmas.

  12. hot coffee, a warm fire and another of your amazing stories, thank you :)

  13. So beautiful!! I don't think I hardly breathed when I was reading this, you do stop me in my tracks,oh how lovely.
    Hugs Lynn xxxx

  14. Another beautiful post, Pamela. We're foregoing a tree this year with the pups. I can just imagine Duncan (Houdini the destructor) and Hamish (the instigator) dismanteling the tree limb by limb and destroying the ornaments. We'll be at our daughter's anyway but next year.....

  15. I love your references to Robert Frost, CS Lewis, and Tolkien; they lend even more magic to this beautiful piece, Pamela! Now I feel a little more in the Christmas spirit after reading this! Thanks, my friend.

    Oh, and I love that you've been to Plockton! It looks like such a charming place.

    xoxo Gigi

  16. Lovely, and well said Pamela. Best wishes for another, beautiful season.

  17. How funny... you were visiting me as I was visiting you! Talk about the same wavelength!

  18. So beautifully written:) grandchildren helped me put the candles in all my windows today...they will stay there until Feb...but our tree won't go up until the week before Christmas...long enough for a live tree in our dry house...

  19. Pamela, very lovely words and the image is perfect. Now I am ready to be in the spirit!

  20. When we lived in the little Northern Village of Powassan, we would go out into the snowy nights to cut down our Christmas Tree.

    Being old big city people now we have an artificial tree.

    And just dream of our days in Powassan and the smell of pine in the house.

  21. How lovely. Choosing a tree is one of the lovely tasks for this time of year. Sadly after my blistered reaction to taking out last year's tree we are buying an artificial one. Back in Wales we'd go out to the forest and select one. They always looked smaller outside so we'd end up having to chop some off. One year it was 4ft too long, but we did get better at guessing.

  22. Yes indeed, Pamela, there is something truly magical about the Christmas Tree - your writing is beautiful.

  23. Magical. Thanks Pamela. I adore your writing.

  24. Hi Pamela

    You brought back such wonderful memories with this beautiful post. As a child, my very favourite part of Christmas was going out with my father to cut the tree. After great thought the tree was selected (we must have driven him mad with our indecision), taken home and lovingly dressed. I can still see every one of them standing majestically in the corner. Thank you for this little piece of nostalgia. Leigh

  25. What do you do with your tree after Christmas?

    I put mine in a woodland wattle knowing in summer's heat I'll smell the Christmas needles & resin.

    Beautiful words.........about your tree.

    Garden & Be Well, XO Tara

  26. Enchanting, Pamela. The way Christmas should be. And Happy St Andrew's Day! Lizzy :)

  27. I love this time of year !! And really, it's the simple things. Whether it's finding the perfect or imperfect tree (more often the most charming), the colder weather (hopefully snow), or just spending time with friends and family. Pamela, you are a treasure ! Thank you.

    By the way, my warmest congratulations on your 200th post ! I'm so sorry I'm a bit late on this, but have just been catching up with some fab blog pals.

  28. Oooh, beautiful and so atmospheric, Pamela.

  29. I do love the smell of winter. Thanks for bringing it to me!

  30. Whatever you're taking, I want some of it, too!
    Such a magical world, yours.

  31. Dear Pamela, I am catching up on your posts, and I am so pleased to read this one, which is so like mine today (not a plug, just nice in connection). You created the tree picking scene as if you alone were in a forest, and that's pretty sweet and poignant. Christmas is what we bring to it.

  32. I just realized I hadn't commented. Beautifully written- absolutely fantastic! Thank you.


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