|A little Larch loses its leaves.|
We are one moon cycle from winter solstice, the shortest day of the year. People all over the northern hemisphere celebrate solstice as it represents the day that the sun starts its return to northern skies.
That was the crux of all celebrations at this time of year before they were co-opted by corporate interests. We celebrated surviving the frightening experience of the sun's heat and light leaving us in the cold and dark.
And then, on winter solstice, the sun returns to us. Thank the solar system and physics - the heat and light return. We just may be fortunate enough to enjoy another year. The green fuse sparks to life.
I was reminded of the greatness of this time of year, and the hope that solstice offers year after year after year, when I stumbled upon a luminescent tiny tree in the forest while on a hike.
You may see a scraggly, little "Charlie Brown Christmas tree", but I saw a magnificent Solstice Tree that was positively radiant in photonic splendour.
Even as its needles turned gold and began to fall, it was already hinting at the warmth that follows the chill winds of winter. Its resplendent display spoke to me, and it said, "See you when the sun returns and we can grow together again."
What could be better than that?