This is a Canaan fir tree. I planted 450 of these and two other varieties on my farm in Vermont during April vacation. This particular tree was planted in soil from Rome, Italy. The soil was putatively extracted from the property of our former principal at SKHS, Bob McCarthy, by one of my students. Trees have always been important to me because they symbolize hope even at times when belief in good outcomes for humanity seems impossibly naïve. As Kahil Gibran wrote, "Trees are poems the earth writes upon the skies." Despite my systemic pessimism, planting trees, like writing poems is a defiant negation of despair. Even though all of the evidence authoritatively asserts we are fucked, humans like trees are phototropic; we are averse to the darkness and embrace the light. Hope is encoded in our DNA. And despite all of the toxic triggers, endless violence, and insatiable cupidity, the epigenome is powerless to shut down the hope gene. Paradoxically, it appears irrefutably true that our tribe have many endearing qualities that intimate considerable potential for improved behavior. Of course, such a notion might just be the result of a cascade mRNA transcripts from that damn gene.
I am not certain why this post took direction it did because all I really wanted to say was that this tree has great sentimental value to me. I liked Bob a lot and our school is diminished by his absence. Like so many things, I don't understand why we fail to tell people that they made an important difference in our lives until it is too late. This is one of my all too many shortcomings.