Working With Trees

I worked a temp job today as a logger for a company called Jackson Logging. They brought 12 of us up from Chicago in a shuttle at 4:30 this morning. We worked in a small town called Muskakegan, Wisconsin. We were separated into groups of three. Two of us sawed, one managed the direction of the fall.

I’d never sawed down a tree before today. Normally I like hiking in a forest. I feel a deep freedom amongst the pines, oak and redwood. I feel they accept me as I am. They say, “Come on in, be yourself.” I can walk hours at a time without a thought.

As I sawed I was amazed that I felt the same kind of calm. There was no sense of betrayal. I didn’t feel like I was hurting my friends. Somehow I sensed an acceptance only a tree could give. It was like, “I’m happy to keep you company on a walk, or to be a piece of paper you may one day write on.”

I had tears streaming down my face. Vince, one of my co-workers, asked if I was okay. I said, “No worries, I cut my hand, it’s not deep, I’ll be okay.” I sensed he knew there was something else going on. But he could also tell I’m a private guy and respected my quiet place.

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