It was another lazy humid dog day yesterday, relieved only by a tiny breeze off the lake. And a tiny breeze was just enough; anything more would have prevented the tree trimmers from their work. In the four years I've lived here, everything has been growing. My neighbor's Chinese elm and my red maple on the eastern side have slowly but surely been closing the gap on my satellite dish's eye to the sky. Up there somewhere are the two satellites, two little (compared to the shuttle or the space station, I'm sure) hunks of junk that are having trouble beaming down my evening's entertainment, sight unseen. I don't even know what shape they are, if the spin or turn, if they beep (except in space, no one can hear you beep, either). Are they even, technically, in space? I have no idea how high up they orbit. What a world.
So, yesterday, the tree team arrived. They could trim the maple from the ground, using an extension pole with a chopper on the tip. But for the much older and taller elm, they had to get airborne themselves. Like a Cirque du Soleil harlequin, one fellow hoisted himself on a series of ropes (not long elegant scarves) and ascended into the upper reaches of the huge tree. He first cleaned out a lot of old dead tangles and then headed out to the larger limb. I was the only one in the audience, but I gasped audibly as as he inched out until he was over the water. It takes a lot of skill and nerve to hang there, with the rocks and waves two stories below, with a chain saw dangling from one's belt (middle photo)! He cut the big limb in sections, tying each one to guide ropes so that when cut from the tree, it would swoop down in an arc to the other team members waiting below. It was a tree trimmers' ballet, an acrobatic display of skill and timing!
Today, the branches and the chipper and the ropes are gone. Nothing remains except perhaps a bit of sawdust between the blades of grass to show that a performance even took place. And overhead, the satellites beam down once again.
The Cloud Messenger (Meghadūta) is a lyric poem by the respected Indian poet, Kālidāsa. The poem centers around a yaksa in exile. Longing for his beloved, waiting for him on a Himalayan mountain, he asks a cloud to take a message to her. The sights he tells the cloud it will see on its way make up most of the poem.
The idea of recording observations appeals to me. I thought The Cloud Messenger was the perfect title for a blog about the journey that we all make as we move through our days.
I'm a baby boomer who grew up dancing in the streets of Detroit during the classic Motown years, lived beside the Rocky Mountains for many years, now retired and living (and writing full time) in S. Ontario. I have one blog for rock 'n' roll oldies, and one for nature, poetry and life along the Lake.