Writing my way through the A-to-Z blogging challenge, I’ve tasked myself with exploring the concepts of pronoia (the belief that the universe is conspiring to shower us with blessings), quiety (serenity) and peace – all through the lens of unusual, obscure, or simply delightful-to-me words.
X is for…
xanthic – yellow; yellowish
Today, the last Friday in April, also happens to be Natonal Arbor Day. Being the tree lover that I am, there can never be too much praise of trees in my opinion, and I delight in a holiday that celebrates them. It seems only fitting to somehow relate my word of the day, xanthic, to trees.
That’s not a problem. One of the things I love about Spring is taking walks and watching the trees as they change day by day, week by week. Every year I think I’ll make a project of it, photographing certain trees (or every tree depending on my ambition) but I’ve never gotten around to it. I just look with my eyes, and delight when the trees start budding and then the leaves start unfurling. I never cease to be amazed – it feels so incredibly magical. And that Spring green – that luminous xanthic-infused green that appears ever-so briefly is one of my favorite colors. I swear when I see it I literally feel my heart chakra open.
One of my favorite tree are ginkgos. There’s so much magic about them. They belong to one of the oldest known plant families, and with a fossil record that goes back almost 300 million years they’re bridges from prehistoric times to now. With their history of survival it seems only fitting that in Japan they are known as the “bearer of hope” as four ginkgo trees were the only things that survived in the epicenter of the atomic bomb blast that devastated Hiroshima. Hope is such a beautiful blessing and we all need more of that these days.
In autumn ginkgos are the most wondrous examples of xanthic majesty. The leaves themselves are lovely, leathery and somewhat waxy, and once you’ve seen ginkgos you’re unlikely to forget their fan shape.
I created this piece quite some time ago, and have always loved it because the xanthic leaf came to me under magical circumstances.
Speaking of love, I’m much taken with Rabindranath Tagore’s observation:
“Trees are the earth’s endless effort to speak to the listening heaven.”
Isn’t that a lovely sentiment to hold especially on Arbor Day?
So tell me, are you celebrating trees today? Have plans to plant any? Keeping your eyes peeled for some xanthric treasure to delight you? Do tell – you know I love to hear.