I had to get the tree right on this one. It was as important as the bird. Not as glamorous, no, with its bright hat and striped coat, but still so necessary, and so beautiful.
I sat outside in front of the tree, studying its nooks and cracks. Painting the full background, without the bird. And once I got it right, the bird would come to life.
I remember him telling me as a kid, out in his field, picking rock, “I can’t glamorize the dirt.” It stuck with me. He didn’t say a lot, my grandfather, but when he did, I listened. I knew it was important — to do the work. Every year he took this mess of dirt and turned it into something green, and then something gold. It wasn’t glamorous, but it was beautiful.
I suppose he was my first tree, and my mother was my second — the strength that allowed me to flit about and find the beat of my own drum. What a gift this is. So I will take my time to get it right. They are still my “necessary”, the strength behind my beat, and I give thanks for this beauty, every day.