Nature endures

One of the benefits that you can draw out of the awesome destructive power of nature (assuming you are not preoccupied with direct disaster) is the incredible protection taken by the apparently unprotected.

As I watched the trees bending under the squall bands from Tropical Storm Isaac, I was brought back to our last (local) hurricane strike, Wilma.

The direction and timing of that storm afforded me some minutes on my back porch to watch the storm tear at the homes and landscape.  Hardly a daredevil, the rotation of the storm is quite predictable and the winds (at that moment) were coming from the other side of the house from the patio.

I wouldn’t challenge it for long; moving back inside shortly after I felt the first nip of changing winds.  But for that time, I watched with a sense of awe and a sense of irony as the shingles were ripping off the roofs of the homes behind me (as were mine, but I couldn’t see those) and yet, in the middle of the open expanse between my homes and my neighbors, a distance of roughly a hundred yards, there stood a slim tree, bent and bowed but perhaps not cowed from the mighty winds.

As I watched today, in winds much less destructive, I once again marveled at the brilliance of life.  To create a tree with strength enough to grow tall and hold outstretched limbs weighted by leaves and still have enough flexibility to rock in the wind so as not to be torn from the ground.

Certainly, given a powerful enough storm and a direct hit, these trees would have been sundered from their life.  Yet, absent that relatively rare event, they are capable of withstanding much that life throws at them, bearing under heavy headwinds and inclement conditions.  And then, the storm passes and the trees can return to reaching new heights.

A better allegory for humans, I cannot imagine.  Nature endures; we can follow its example.

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