Saturday, November 3, 2012

A Tribute to The Trees of Prospect Park

The sun greets me as I step from my brownstone and out in to the leaf-strewn street. 
This morning is the 5K Walk/Run fundraiser for Prospect Park.  I'm early and cheerful volunteers serve up water and bagels.  I watch the runners come across the finish line and enjoy the warmth and the smell of autumn in this wonderful refuge nestled in the middle of the Park Slope neighborhood of Brooklyn. 

Families and individuals take to the Park for this annual fundraiser and this year has special meaning.  With Hurricane Sandy ripping hundreds of trees from the ground, funds raised will help with the clean up efforts.  And with the New York Marathon cancelled, many of those runners are now converging to participate in this event.  An unexpected and welcome surprise for Prospect Park!

Today I walk for all the trees that remain, for the trees that suffered but will survive, and for the trees that were or will have to be destroyed.  Trees witness our lives and I am here to bear witness to theirs.

I could walk this 5k in an hour.  But today, on this beautiful autumn day, with the slight breeze sending the red, orange, brown, green and yellow leaves dancing across the expansive space of lawn, the sun beaming brightly down through the tree branches and the laughter and energy of the other walkers and runners mixing with my own, I'm going to take my time, breathe deeply and give thanks for the trees that remain standing.  

With their roots planted firmly, these are New York's sentinels, reaching skyward and whispering in to the passing wind, "we are here, we will remain".


Thanks to those of you who sponsored my walk
in support of the Park! 


Josiane Bauke said...

I, too, feel for the trees. I must have seen over 100 fallen trees these last few days. They lie in wake throughout the Bronx. I see them in the parks, alongside highways and in backyards. It's sad, to say the least, especially, since some of these trees were probably here before my grandparents, but, in the circle of life, it all makes sense. They will make room for new trees. They will provide homes for small animals and insects. They will provide nutrients for decomposers which in turn will provide for the soil. I guess, it's all about perspective. Without death, there would be no life.

Taz Tally said...

Thank u 4 the tree photos
luv the walking shadows too!
I am eager to visit with the trees of Prospect park

Anonymous said...

Today is my 66th birthday. I was a war baby born in NY. My mother was from Brooklyn (Greenpoint) and my Dad was from Texas. IN the 40's in NY, babies were walked every day in a baby carriage--pretty fancy deal! We went to several parks, but Prospect Park was one of my Mother's very favorites!!! She would get very upset with the people in Texas who thought there were no trees in BROOKLYN!!! Thank you for reinforcing these memories and for cherishing the TREES!

Christina Whiting said...

Hi Josie. Thanks for sharing your thoughts. Yes, there is much to be grateful for in this circle of life...

Christina Whiting said...

Thanks Taz. I'm eager to share the park with you!

Christina Whiting said...

Happy Birthday! I hope you had a fabulous day of celebration. Thank you for sharing your story. Trees witness so much of our lives and this storm reminded me to take the time to sit still beneath these trees and to really, really appreciate them. This walk/run provided a great opportunity for thousands of people, locals and visitors alike, to experience both the beauty of Prospect Park and the devastation to the trees. We are all stewards of this planet and I believe that we ought to attend to what we love... Thanks again for sharing!