A universal truth that I seem to have tripped upon is that, even when something appears to strike a posture of separateness or independence from all else, it takes just a small step back to find that it is actually working in harmony with everything around it – there really is no separation. A solitary tree making a striking pose against the sky, like everything else, does not “lose” its identity because of this reality but actually appears all the more beautiful, complete and purposeful from this broadening of perspective.
In fact, the broader perspective of this lone tree – spotted on a country walk from the village of Gotham in Nottinghamshire at the end of August – gave the impression that it was almost orchestrating the dramatic cloud formations that were pushing off from the hillside and, if so, it could hardly have summoned a more stunning backdrop. There was certainly a sense of synergy unfolding before my very eyes – the tree “worked” better for its sky and the sky would have been far less dramatic without its tree. In short, here was one very small tree: in its landscape, of its landscape, contributing to the overall magnificence of its landscape.