Luscious servings of gunpowder tea and with it the heavenly accomplice of shortbread biscuits were both duly scoffed down in the local manor house with deserved relish, and no sooner than an hour had passed that Samka and I had reached a hearty consensus that we were fully recharged and ready to hit the road in her new chocolate truffle of a wheelie ‘box’. We made our way out of the great big doors of the mansion when the flurry of excitement, that we had built up in reminiscing of our wild navigations in the woods, was quickly hemmed in by a forlorn and sad sight in front of us.
A large tree had been ruthlessly chopped down to the ground and all that was left of its presence was the low-lying and pale cross-section of its base, a bare plateaux of trunk, and in the same way a neck strains to breathe, it morosely stuck out of the ground. My eyes crouched in silence, I felt its roots over my aura, whispering into my ear of its hushed dream to strive towards Life. It was not dead.
A broken tree, a broken lung of the world, abandoned to negligence it was, but I was critical in my determination to tell its story and have it engraved in the mantelpiece of undying myth. As long as people made their way to my words the severed trunk would never only just amount to an inconsequential stump of wood, it would always mean to whomsoever read of it, something much, much more. I wished for people to see that by sensing the missing of its parts there would arise the ironic spread of a bridge for remembering what it once was even though You do not have the memory of its healthy form in the first place. You are doing this right now. You can see the tree in its glorious entirety. What is this Force? It is called IMAGINATION my dear Reader and it is the lifeblood that is the foundation for coping with the mysteriousness of Life and Death.
Stalwart in my Vision, I briefed Samka that she ought to join Forces with our stumpy friend in an act of defiance against those who sought to rid and rob of the tree’s significance. We were both childhood climbers of trees, spent our days under their strong boughs whilst white blossoms, one at a time, would float down on our faces and heads, the kinsfolk of stars they seemed to our captivated eyes. Though it was not in our power to repair the limbs of this muted giant, I was aware that we were at least in possession of the gift to imbue it with immortality and raise its Spirit.
And without a moment’s hesitation Samka leapt on top of the flat truncated surface of the tree that once was, and immediately the morbid scene of loss and breakage transformed into a burst of new daybreak! Without my saying anything, Samka had soon placed one hand on her knee in a bent-in posture as if she were expressing open solidarity with the tree that she, too, had once been a creature of broken knees and broken dreams. Two casualties of an existential war. Not to seal the end of the composition so swiftly, Samka then continued to shift until she lifted an assertive hand to her hip on the right, a striking sign of her recognition that she was a woman who was prepared to fight against all odds – even forfeiting broken legs and knees – so that she may reach the doors of her dreams. She had eloquently conveyed my own Story… ♥
No longer was the tree’s stump a cut-off point – a raw remembrance of what had been lost – instead, the delicate but robust figure of Samka instilled a renewed purpose to the tree and it became as though the hard and cold platform that she stood upon had grown to accept that it could live again, as the wide palm of The Selfish Giant himself, except he was not selfish in the slightest, he was giving and receiving with his friend with whatever little he had. He felt the joy of purpose pulse across the dry desert of his giant palm, and he greatly loved the return of what it felt to be needed and remembered. ♥
He was not alone anymore and that made him as happy as any giant could ever be to which I heard him sing into the air, “I am the Big Friendly Giant and plenty of Force I still have inside of me, with it I shall raise the Spirits of all those who come to know of me!”
So, remember dear Reader, to be confronted with something broken can upset us, the sharp poignancy of our inability to revert to an earlier whole state taunting us forever, like shadows whom we chase relentlessly and never once catch.
But everything and everyone has a Purpose and that is why I suppose when two broken things meet for the first time ‘there is a great disturbance in the Force’. Not the dark sort, more like a cheerful combustion of rainbows taking place all over the world at the same time… ♥♥♥
Photography & Words: © Masufa Khatun | Mazzy Khatun Photo Stories | Sparsholt Countryside|Hampshire | UK 2015