A few weeks ago as the leaves were coming into bud, I saw these trees alongside the River Nene in Peterborough.  The sight reminded me of this poem by Macrina Wiederkehr:


Winter trees 2


She celebrated the sacrament of

Letting Go…

First she surrendered her Green

Then the Orange, yellow, and Red…

Finally she let go of her Brown…

Shedding her last leaf

She stood empty and silent, stripped bare

Leaning against the sky she began her vigil of trust…

Shedding her last leaf

She watched its journey to the ground…

She stood in silence,

Wearing the color of emptiness

Her branches wondering:

How do you give shade, with so much gone?

And then, the sacrament of waiting began

The sunrise and sunset watched with

Tenderness, clothing her with silhouettes

They kept her hope alive.

They helped her understand that

her vulnerability

her dependence and need

her emptiness

her readiness to receive

were giving her a new kind of beauty.

Every morning and every evening she stood in silence and celebrated

the sacrament of waiting.



Macrina Wiederkehr