In Loving Memory of my Mother
who on July 4, 2013 passed away from the affliction of terminal melanoma.
It has been 6 months since I enjoyed the pleasures of painting outdoors. And so on a beautiful, autumn day, I painted this particular tree in a Newburyport farm field. A small gathering of dairy cows were off to the left. I hoped they would continue their grazing and find shade under this particular tree but alias they settled down out of sight. And I set up my easel along the side of the rural road under a fully developed Black Walnut tree.
Within the walnut's golden arbor was a frisky squirrel. I was not intimated by the multiple tumbling of large hard fruits which fell from the branches onto the ground as the squirrel jumped from branch to branch during my three hour painting session. Not once did they hit me although I did think often the squirrel was making a target of my head.
But the real focus of my painting this morning was this single tree in a brightly lit field: a tall, vertical assemblage of tightly clinging leaves, in a landscape of multiple horizontal banding: a fully, developed column which supported the space between earth and sky.
Trees are common symbols and metaphors used in the Bible. They are mentioned over 525 times, more then any other living organism, except for human beings. From the first book of the Bible, Genesis, with a reference to the Tree of Life in the Garden of Eden to the last book of the New Testament in Revelation, which refers to the Tree of Life as a major feature in Paradise. Nature is very important element to the reading of the Bible.
As modern man alienates himself more and more from nature, can a parallelism be drawn in reference to why he is presently withdrawing from his Creator? Isn't there a need to rediscover the Truth that nature is sacred as subscribed in the Bible?
She is like a tree planted by a stream of water which yields its fruit in season and whose leaf does not wither. Whatever she does, prospers.