Today I’ve been missing him a lot. For reasons I will explain another time, another day – I started thinking a lot more about something I heard about a month ago … a 500-year-old tree that was cut down to be turned into another log that decorated a log cabin of a multi-million dollar log cabin.
The speaker, André Chevigny, of Timber Kings described with relish and pride how he, along with the owner of that log home picked out this tree and “harvested” it. Chevigny was the keynote speaker at Ontario Forest Industries Association 72nd Annual General Meeting and Reception.
As I listened to him that afternoon I was repulsed and shocked. That tree was home to many a bird, animal, fungi and a whole host of other biodiversity. A look at Timber Kings’ Facebook page shows that his show is not a stranger to cutting down 500 or 1,000-year old trees to buttress egos of millionaires’ log homes.
We live in times of disastrous changing climates. Whether we will ever have trees that live to be even a 100 in that area where those 500 and 1,000-year-old trees were cut is not something we can foresee or foretell. But that someone would partake in the act of cutting such an ancient tree is despicable. What is worse is that an association that takes pride in calling itself “green” and “environmentally friendly” would have such a man be a keynote speaker. It puts into question not just the organization, but its intention and vision.
So how does that relate to my Dad’s death? When someone close to you dies, are you ever whole again? What happens when you hold something they used – their watch, their chair…? How does that feel?
The loss of that tree would be the death of a home to a few hundred if not a few thousand creatures. Wherever they choose to live again, they’d have to put down new roots but those roots would never be complete – they would have lost memories and moments … scattered around the ghost of where the tree once stood, they’d cling to what springs next but it will never be the same again.