Walnut Tree

My favorite tree is a Walnut Tree.
Their leaves are small and round and they fan out along the length of each branch. The gray bark of their trunks lay in vertical elongated rows that overlap one another. They selfishly soak up the sun’s light and reflect a warm, bright green color. Their bitter citrusy scent propagates through the lawn and their walnuts fall from their drooping branches and threaten to hit any who walk beneath. 

The physical characteristics make Walnut Trees appealing, but they are not the reason I so dearly love Walnut Trees.

There is a place called Siloam. It is nestled in an acute valley in the heart of the Ozark Mountains. A natural spring produces crystal clear water and sends it bubbling down the hills and into the valley. The creek flows vertically through the camp and acts as a perfect halfway marker between the left and right sides of camp. At night tree frogs line the creek bank and call out for potential mates while cicadas and crickets chirp in matching harmony.

Wooden pavilions scatter the camp grounds. The frail, white frames of these pavilions hold nearly sixty years of conversation secret. Inscribed in the frames are the very names of campers who have given the pavilions these secrets to hold.

Scattered alongside the old and weak pavilions are trees that are even older than they. These old trees have the slightest droop in their branch ends. Their bark is weathered and their roots strain up from underneath the earth. Their unripen fruit falls from their branches and cover the bases of the old trees.

My favorite tree is a Walnut Tree.
What stories they must have to tell. They’ve stood their ground longer than the pavilions and as long as the old creek. They’ve heard the tree frogs and the cicadas and the crickets. They have known the campers who have walked underneath their canopy’s cover.

My favorite tree is a Walnut Tree.
Because when I smell the bitter citrus and hear the walnuts fall I know that I am in the place. The place where the springs send a cascade of clear water into the creek. The creek that flows through the valley that divides the camp in half. I know that I am in the place where campers laugh and the Lord works. I know that I am at Siloam. I love Siloam and Siloam has Walnut Trees. So my favorite tree is a Walnut Tree.

Daily Prompt- Tree

 

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