Where I’m from, untouched nature is rare. It seems like a dream living on this little island surrounded by so many beautiful places only a short walk away. I want Odin to appreciate the earth as I do and as his father does. I want Odin to inherit Zak’s gardener’s hands. I want him to remember fondly their time together planting new life and I want him to feel a connection with the earth.
The earth remembers every soul that has touched it. Every caress and every step. Every tree has a story to tell and if you listen carefully you can hear what it has to say. We have taken Odin on as many walks as possible since he was in the womb. When he was only a few months old, we brought him to the name tree where Zak etched his name amidst the hundreds of other carved names from the past 40 (or more) years.
As the father of a 5th generation Nantucketeer, I asked Zak to write a bit for this entry;
“As this little gods name fades into the montage of other names laying claim to so much of this ancient tree’s flesh, marking countless moments and people trapped in time like a bug in amber or the height of a child against a wall throughout the years, each on a different trajectory holding tight and trying not to vomit, the snake will continue to swallow its own tail and one season will slide painlessly into the next. The years will wink, dishing out new rings and wrinkles all around, the sun still out of reach yet ever closer to these out-stretched limbs. Sway as the wind whispers its sweet wisdom that fill your eyes with the images of a thousand nights spent pushing through the darkness only to find light every morning on the other side. Moving the world and remaining unchanged, even when harnessed. With rustling at your back and thunder in your throat you will step in the shoes of every ghost you used to be, remember every shade of every color you turned before your final whirlwind tumble to earth, to be blown like a boisterous October leaf down memory lane shouting Hallelujah to any passing foot and exclaiming how grand it was before life became a game of trampling yourself. Hold tight, fill your sails with the days beneath you and ride high on every hard learned lesson you caught over the years and found to precious to throw back, no matter how small. And when one day you stand here with your child, trying to remember where it was your father threw your name into this word soup you might just catch the sun glimmering through a chink in time, reflecting back at you an endless hall of mirrors filled with this moment repeated endlessly and beautifully down through the years. “
Standing at the tree where the memory of a day with a three month old Odin lives is a beautiful feeling. His papa will bring him here countless times in the future years and each time will have a story to tell.
And I will tell Odin stories about how he would nurse to sleep on our walks and how he would nuzzle into my chest, helping to create some of my most vivid memories.