Home among the gum trees

I sat outside on the decking after dinner last night.  Next door a gum tree stands tall and barren, some 25 metres high. The tree is dead, killed by a parasite which ate through it over a year ago. It looks stark and with no leaves or greenery I often think it’s an eye sore. Ugly. Our neighbor spent thousands of dollars trying to save it, but without any luck.  My fear is that in strong winds it’ll topple but apparently it’s been declared safe.


Safe but still not particularly attractive.


But as I sat outside last night, I looked upwards and silhouetted against the blue sky beyond, I saw the birds. Coming and going. White cockatoos, sparrows, little wattle birds, king parrots, all coming and going. Sometimes I’ve seen kookaburras in the tree as well.

Landing, flying off, sitting in the tree. Preening themselves. Nesting and protecting.


Sometimes their chirping and birdsong is so loud it’s deafening.  But this is their haven, a place of safety.  This is their shelter.


And I realised that everything has a reason for being.  Even something that appears as though it has nothing left to give, no beauty left, like this once grand old tree which is now barren and stark, it’s lush green foliage gone. But still it serves as a shelter for our native birds. I look at it now with new eyes.

Everything in life has a purpose. A reason for being here.  May we all open our eyes to the beauty in everyday things and find our purpose in life. And may it be meaningful.

48 thoughts on “Home among the gum trees

  1. This is so great. The darkness of the limbs against that radiant blue are something. This story hit home for me today. About an acre of our yard has been taken over by Black Locust trees. If you haven’t heard of them, they are meeeeaaaan. They have giant thorns covering all the branches and are quite unfriendly.

    We are in the process of getting them out of our yard and I spent the afternoon picking up horribly thorny branches. At one point, I asked my husband why on earth were these trees even put on this earth?

    Then, like you, I thought of the birds. The perfect protection against things that don’t want to get poked! Ha!

    Your story was perfectly timed. Thank you! 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Ouch, they really don’t sound like friendly trees at all. And it sounds like you had a hard time picking up all the thorny branches. It’s hard to feel upbeat when you’re in the midst of such prickly nuisance trees but I’m glad my post at least reminded you of the birds that need the protection.

      Liked by 1 person

        1. Yeah, I can relate. In my case it comes down to neglect outside whilst busy trying to take care of everything (and everyone) inside. Thank goodness for machines that help!

          Liked by 1 person

  2. Hi Miriam I saw your response to OM blog and followed your link to your blog. All very good, well done. I have a good friend down under in Gary Simpson but don’t have too many other Aussie acquaintances and friends.I am only blogging occasionally but have other websites and digital affairs. I’m clicking your follow button… Best wishes

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Understand completely Miriam, we have a huge gum tree in the paddock between us and our neighbours which was struck by lightning more than 10 years ago and is still a beautiful tree and perch for lots of birds. Don’t despair, as long as it is far enough away from your house.

    Liked by 1 person

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