Two little seeds, both full of potential, took root near to each other around the same time.
They both grew into thin but tenacious saplings, and although they lived side by side, they were completely unaware of each other, so focused they were on reaching towards the bright promise of the open starry sky, and on drinking all the nutrients they could out of the earth below them. They wanted only for themselves and their own progress. They wanted to be large!
Their roots became stable and branched out beneath them in an intricate network. They became more sure of themselves and more daring as they flourished, reaching ever higher. Underground, the furthest extremities of their tiniest roots began to touch each other, subtly at first and then with familiarity, weaving and winding around each other. Above ground, they felt each other’s presence through the contact of their roots, but could not put a name to it. They both felt a tangible longing for the other, not realizing unseen forces has already drawn them together. Their path towards each other was predetermined, both by the whimsy of fate, which had planted them in proximity, and by their own searching nature, which made expansion their natural state.
In their foolish youth, they both remained oblivious of anything beyond their own want for earth’s nectar and the stars’ promise. But then one day, one of their reaching branches, quite by accident, touched a branch of the other.
They both instantly buzzed alive with the thrill of that touch. They hummed with joy as they knew they had found what they’d been yearning for, and both said, “It’s you!” From that moment onward they were inseparable not just because of their intertwined roots, but because of a new awareness of their joined purpose. They now reached not only up towards the stars and down into the earth, but also around each other, so that as the years went on, their branches formed a lasting embrace.
They are still two trees, but now, from a distance, they appear to be one.
Complete, 24″ x 30″, Oil on Canvas, © Cedar Lee, All Rights Reserved
It is by random accident, but fitting, that the negative space formed at the base of their trunks is in the shape of a heart.
The heart symbol, in human pair bonding, is frequently exchanged as a shorthand expression of love, to lazily refer to it all: that mysterious longing, that buzzing thrill of discovering another, and all the work it takes, as you grow and expand through life, to choose to do it together. “Your heart. My heart. Let’s put them together and be complete,” we say.