On Tuesdays I post a writing prompt because I have had students that have trouble coming up with things to write. They need a direction, an arrow pointing off into the distance, a gentle push into forward motion, a leaning, and they just start walking that way. They haven't learned to trust their own inspiration. "Give me direction!" is their cry. (Though I don't do this anymore, the prompts still reside on my blog and can be used repeatedly.)
"Tree." What does a person see with just this one word? Something will come to mind even if it is a sapling, twisted and nearly barren of leaves, a Whovian cluster of green hopeful growth at the tippy top of its highest reaching twig; two asymmetrical arm-like branches crook downwards at odds with the upward desire. Mature oaks garbed in rough bark stand imposingly by, gruff opposers of any young upstarts grasping at the stabbing sunlight, great spears of dancing photosynthesis, splashes on last fall's dry castaways. In the breezy rustle that sallies down the stiff elder oaks, there marches the firm argument that supplying a cart load of seed is not a promise to provide a place to root. The sapling quivers its reply, a sithering shuffle of curled, mint-green locks straining to rub together a complaint for air, water and light.
Just lean, all it takes is a little bit of lean.