Sunday, July 20, 2014

Prompt: The Dreaming Tree

I still remember when Boa carried me to the dreaming tree for my first cutting. He tended his own rooted cutting every morning and every evening, pouring a handful of water around the long white roots , barely visible in the thick black soil that filled his pack. He showed me how the water drained through the soil and clung to the roots. “Too little and it will shrivel up; too much and it will drown and rot. You must find your cutting’s balance, see Tippa?”

Boa had tended his cutting for many years, and it stood taller than him when his pack rested on the ground. When the tribe daywalked, he carried it on his back, and those closest to him enjoyed the tree’s shade. On those rare occasions that the tribe nightwalked, Boa wrapped his sleeping blanket around the tree’s furled leaves. “We must protect them in their sleep, Tippa, or there will be no dreams for us later.”

I was three when Boa said it was time for my first cutting. Mya said I was too young to climb the dreaming tree to find the tender new growth that made best cuttings, but Boa scoffed and leaned down to whisper in my ear, “Run to that round-leaved tree, Tippa, and show your Mya how well you can climb.”

His fingers pointed to a round-leaved tree that shaded old Beeba’s tent. Beeba was one of our best dreamers; everyone showed her respect with gifts of food, water, and shade. I loved to curl up with Beeba and share her dreams. When she slept longer than me, I would lie next to her and watch the sunlight through the tree’s leaves, imagining what it would be like to have my own dreaming tree someday. As long as I could remember, Boa had told me that one day, I would have my very own cutting to tend, and I would guard the tribe’s next dreaming tree…

To be continued…

Dogs in House
Houdini, Brindle

Time writing
~20 minutes

July word count

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