Photo courtesy of Cody Terry
Today my son in law posted a picture of his outdoor thermometer, the hand sits pretty at well over 100 degrees. It has been months scene Hillsboro has had a good soaking. The grass has turned brown long ago, the ground shows it's thirst by cracking beneath your feet, and the tree in front of my building is in pretty sad shape. As I scan the local channels for any sign of rain, I stop at the CBS DFW Channel. Warnings are posted for thunderstorms and heavy rain, jackpot !! The longer I watch and listen, the more clear it becomes; the rain doesn't seem to make it this far South.
It isn't hard to see that our grounds are suffering and in need of a healthy dose of "down pour". While I was enjoying the setting sun, my eyes looked over at the tree, and I noticed where she has begun to crack.
Just past this section of the tree, she curves over top of the staircase leading to the second floor. The breezeway where two apartment entrances are, and mine is one of them. I don't think the cracked section will fall, at least I am not sure it will, but the heat has clearly done a number on her.
The beaten and battered section can be seen clearly from my front door, and her leaves are worn and sad. Longing for the taste that will enrich her veins and bring life back to her branches. After her branch curves over top of the staircase, she reaches out and across my front door. Normally, when rain hasn't been lost for so long, her branches held themselves high, and her leaves shaded my entrance way. Today's heat has been to much for her. She is tired, and looks to give in.
With no sprinkler system running throughout the complex grounds, and little chance for rain today, I think back to the days of my childhood. Playing in the Jonnie Pump on the Upper Concourse, was a welcomed site on hot days such as today. Putting together a makeshift "slip and slide", would bring out the neighborhood kids. Riding bikes through Shadow Run, turned into a swimming fest at a friendly woman pool. And the music of the ice cream truck, was the tune everyone hummed as it drove away.
Today I longed for just a water hose, and outdoor faucet. The chance to soak the ground beneath her roots, to see her perk up, and cool her trunk.
Even with her smaller branches bare , she is the prettiest tree I have seen. A symbol of power and strength, history and courage. As the fingers of her branches stretch outward toward the open sky ....
... I pray that rain will find its way to her. That the comfort of a down pour wakes her tired soul. That the water lingers around the base of her trunk, offering refreshments throughout the night tonight and into the early morning hours. Willing her leaves to stand tall and proud. Her branches appealing to neighboring birds and the ones that pass through.
At 8:45pm I check the outside temperature .. and am comforted by the site of it dropping. The rain has not made it into Hillsboro, but we wont give up hope. Both the tree and I will keep looking up; searching and scanning the sky for any sign, that rain is heading South.