Bare Branches

Top two photos taken at Greenlake in Seattle, bottom four on Granville Island in Vancouver

I find winter trees achingly beautiful, even more so this winter than any previous one I can remember. I see the black branches spread across the darkening sky and my heart swells with longing, as though there is something in the meeting of essence and horizon that speaks to a part of me that has gone unnamed thus far. Only questions rise up asking me to live into them:

What is my essence? When everything is stripped away, who am I beneath all the roles I play? What is the horizon against which I stand? What is the sacred skyscape of dreams and vision, stories and wisdom that pulses within and through me? Will I allow myself to be both undone and embraced?

-Christine Valters Paintner

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