As I travel down this lonely country road, I am crying. The trees embrace me like a long lost relative. You are so tall and stately, strong and beautiful. I cannot help but wonder about all that you have seen. So many years you have been standing here. Initials carved on your sturdy trunks, swings hanging from your branches blowing gently with the breeze. The wind whispers softly through the leaves, "Come, let me tell you of the loves I have known."
The beckoning becomes stronger. I can no longer resist. I pull over. I spy a path lined with fragrant honeysuckles. I take a deep breath, overwhelmed by the beauty of this woodland paradise. Off in the distance, I can hear the splashing of a brook. I lay my blanket out under a towering oak. I close my eyes.
A young man helps his sweetheart down from the carriage. She is giggling in that special way of those young and in love. They gaze longingly into each other's eyes as they walk along this same path that I have taken. He drops down to one knee and says something to her that I cannot hear. She cries as he slips a ring upon her finger.
I stir, but fall deeper into my slumber.
The children are giggling and playing in the meadow. Their mom and dad sit together away from the clatter of the horses trotting up the lane. I see in their arms a new little one, sweetly cooing and gurgling. They are all so happy.
Again, I stir and fall deeper still into this almost trance-like state.
I see another person unknown to me. An elderly gentleman, holding a bouquet of beautiful red roses, walks better into view. On his cheek, there is a tear. He kneels down by a small marker that until now had been hidden from my view. He places the bouquet upon the marker and whispers, "I love you." He gets up to leave, and I see his face more clearly. He waves to me and walks away.
I am so surprised by his acknowledgment of my presence that I awaken. I take another deep breath and come back to reality. I walk around to all the places where I saw the people in my dream. But was it a dream?
Over there, where the babe was, I find a silver teething ring. And there, where the young lovers were, a hat pin is tucked neatly in the grass. And here, where the gentleman knelt, is the marker with a dried bouquet of roses, the ribbon faded by sun and time.
I go back to the road and to my car. I hear the winds still whispering, and in my heart I know I have seen the same loves that the trees have known through the years. And my heart is overwhelmed with that love. And I cry, this time for joy.
©17 May 1997 Suzanne G. McClendon
Please be sure to read David's post over at Random Thoughts and Observations.
Please also visit our hostess Rosema over at Word-High July.
Disclaimer: These Filipino word images are from an article by Isabelle Laureta on BuzzFeed titled
“36 Of The Most Beautiful Words In The Philippine Language”. All credit goes to them.