2022 Winter Tree Vigil

by | Jan 30, 2023 | 0 comments

The travel conditions were hardly favourable (strikes and ice), and for many of us just the idea of being outside in the sub-zero temperatures forecast wasn’t exactly enticing, but such is the pull of the Last Suffragette Tree that eleven of us turned up for the vigil on 15th December.

Having not seen the tree for 3 years, and with a year of surgery in order to make its limbs safe, everyone who was familiar with it was hugely relieved to see it, replete with a snappy haircut that in no way diminished its stature.

As is often the case, the range of offerings that were brought along created a warm connecting atmosphere around the fire during which tales of growth, grief, courage and transformation were told.

After some silence, a bell was rung for the humans and the tree, its powerful sound calling out to the winter afternoon. As dusk fell, bird song accompanied us as honey cake and birch sap drink was handed around, and the cold metal cast of one of the trees pine cones went from hand to hand.

As the light faded, we shared what we wanted to let go of and give to the fire – our voices vibrating into the freezing dark air and telling of tensions, fears and other things which no longer served us.

Then standing up we gathered around the tree, holding each other and the vast textured trunk in the dark. With the energy coming from the tree and each other we called out words of things we felt the tree was giving us. It was a rainbow of different, vital and inspiring things.

Back inside connections between us deepened over hot soup and home-made bread, as the hosts of the tree itself, Eileen and Keith Paddock, welcomed us into their home. With that we left feeling nourished and looking forward to a New Year.