I chose to read “Living Life With ‘Grace And Elegant Treeness’ ” by Ruth Kamps after searching through the “environment” tag on the This I Believe website.
Ruth’s story is one of transition. She moved from a large city to the country around 40 years ago with her husband. Her transition, however, is much more than a physical one. Ruth finds herself out on her porch staring up at one giant pine tree every day. She analyzes its intricacies and its beauty. Ruth’s mother dies while she is young and pregnant. She, being religious, turned to the church for comfort. However, she finds herself locked out of the church one morning, with a Priest staring at her, not letting her in. He turned her away in her time in need. She then begins to find peace and solace from the pine tree in her yard. She admires her tree’s good job at being graceful and elegant. She sees a little of herself in the tree that she admires. Ruth comes to the conclusion that she can be moral and spiritual person without being religious – she believes “all living things believe and feel in their particular living ways.”
As I said before, I originally found this piece and read it because it was one of the first that came up under the “environment” tag. I thought these types of essay might be appealing to me because I am environmental science major. As I read it, I was struck by how poetic and eloquent it was. This essay really reminded me of John Muir’s voice and spirit. He once said that “In every walk with nature, one receives far more than he seeks” and often mentioned how a person’s interaction with nature is spiritual. It seems that Ruth has come to understands this.
I can relate with Ruth. I often admire the beauty in nature and find peace within it.
If anyone is interested, here is the link to her piece: