Let the Human Spirit Awaken in the Presence of Trees

Books come in many forms, some are exciting adventures of human endurance, others are glimpses inside the human psyche, the list of genres is endless. Some books though are much more than just words on a page, they are havens to bury oneself in and contemplate.

Contemplation is very much what PersonaliTrees is all about. Trees are majestic, my wife’s aunt has a wonderful majestic Oak in her front yard. I could not even guess at its age. The lower boughs are covered in moss, I have to admit that whenever we go to visit, I do take a few minutes to walk to the tree and just marvel at it. It has survived hurricanes, and mans intrusion to its domain, yet it still stands proud.

Joan Klostermann-Ketels has taken a truly unique approach in PersonaliTrees, each page contains just a quote from a well known source and a photograph of a tree. The vast majority of the photographs were take in Iowa around the Pine Lake area. Many of the trees were destroyed in a vicious August 2009 storm that hit the region.

I came across this comment about the book that I thought was most illuminating:

Every tree has a face, a story, and a personality! One needs only to take a walk in the woods to see beauty, contortion, loveliness and hardship in the form of trunks and branches and marvel at each unique design, formed by nature’s fury and grace.

Every tree does indeed have a story. There is nothing more wonderful that wandering through a forest. If a tree could speak, what tales might it tell? Many trees have weathered the storm that we humans have created. Some were large and majestic when the American Civil War was waged. Can you imagine the scenes that the tree might have witnessed?

I find solace in books like this, sometimes it is good to just relax and let thoughts engulf you. I, like so many other people lead a hectic life. Occasionally I seek solace in simplicity and found it in this delightful book. Each delightful page brought yet another evocative photograph. I have not spent much time in Iowa, but the photographs transcend a mere state, they certainly brought back many memories to me. Trees are such an important part of the ecosystem, yet so rarely appreciated.

Just look around your home, what would it be like without trees? What are your tables and chairs made of? What forms the framework of your walls? Where do books come from? Or your morning newspaper? They all come from trees. Trees are a vital resource in our world, take some time out and appreciate them.

You can order your copy of PersonaliTrees from Amazon by clicking on the link above.

Simon Barrett

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