Stephen Evans

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Stephen is a playwright and author of The Marriage of True Minds and A Transcendental Journey.

No One Expects Metasequoia Glyptostroboides

I like trees. This fact will not surprise you if you’ve read this or this.

I’m not exactly sure when this relationship began. But I think it might have been in 1970, on a family vacation to California. We flew out to San Francisco and drove down the coast to LA, stopping for a few days in Yosemite, where I took 1000 or so bad photos, which are now bad and unwatched slides. And somewhere around there we also saw Redwoods.

There were many of them, I think, but not a whole forest of them. And I'm not sure but I beieve we saw one that you could drive through. I don’t really remember how they looked, exactly, or what I thought. But I remember how they made me feel. I remember being surrounded by a sense of immense age, impressed with the realization that there were beings on this earth measured in frames outside the human.   

That was nearly fifty years ago, a long time for me, a moment for them. For some reason over the last few years, I have felt a strong desire to see them again. I’m not sure why, or why now. Maybe I hope something so ancient will make me feel young again. Or maybe just a worry that they, along with so much else, may soon disappear, from erosion or drought or acid rain or who knows. Things disappear – I have learned that. But they also appear.

There is a path behind my house where I walk once or twice most weeks, for the last decade or so. The crooked tree is there, so is the straight one, and most of the others I have written about. I was walking a few days ago when I saw this one.

It’s a redwood. Not a California Redwood, but a Dawn redwood, Metasequoia glyptostroboides, an Asian cousin. It won’t grow as tall as Sequoia sempervirens or a large around as Sequoiadendron giganteum. But it is a redwood. A beautiful one. And it had been there, a hundred yards from my home, for years.

So keep an eye out for redwoods. My new motto is: No one expects Metasequoia glyptostroboides.

Recent Comments
Rosy Cole
You're on the button. No one does expect Metasequoia Glyptostroboides Even Dr Johnson would have been put out of countenance! A ... Read More
Wednesday, 26 April 2017 22:21
Stephen Evans
sounds like a lovely visit. red squirrels - don;t think I have ever seen that - makes sense though! we have black or grey here.... Read More
Thursday, 27 April 2017 18:53
Ken Hartke
Much to my surprise, I spotted a couple in our local nursery. It is a joy to touch the foliage. I just wonder how they would manag... Read More
Thursday, 27 April 2017 16:14
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Literary Limerick

One day Harold was writing a play

Which began in the usual way:

Someone came to a party,

and then it got arty

when no body wanted to stay.

Recent Comments
Rosy Cole
Pinter tends to have that effect on many folk :-)
Thursday, 20 April 2017 14:05
Stephen Evans
Including me!
Friday, 21 April 2017 01:17
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2 Comments

Whence and Whither

The whence of beauty always is unclear.

The whither, that we know, is far from here.

 

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The Task of the Human-Hearted

"The task of the human-hearted man is to procure benefits for the world and to eliminate its calamities. Now among all the current calamities of the world, which are the greatest? I say that attacks on small states by large ones, disturbances of small houses by large ones, oppression of the weak by the strong, misuse of the few by the many, deception of the simple by the cunning, and disdain toward the humble by the honored: these are the mis-fortunes of the world....When we come to think about the causes of all these calamities, how have they arisen? Have they arisen out of love of others and benefiting others? We must reply that it is not so. Rather we should say that they have arisen out of hate of others and injuring others. If we classify those in the world who hate others and injure others, shall we call them 'discrimi-' 'all-embracing'? We must say that they are 'discriminating.' So, then, is not mutual discrimination the cause of the major calamities of the world? Therefore the principle of discrimination is wrong."

Mo Tzu

479~38l B.C

 

Recent Comments
Rosy Cole
It's true it's a hard task to reconcile cultural differences, the things and ways of being that each holds precious, once a people... Read More
Saturday, 04 March 2017 14:02
Stephen Evans
I heard Thomas Freidman today talking about the Trump wall as a symbol of what is going on so many parts of the world - a reaction... Read More
Saturday, 04 March 2017 14:53
Rosy Cole
Yes, indeed. I'd go as far as to say that whatever artificially seeks to divide is coming from a profoundly wrong place. Divide an... Read More
Saturday, 04 March 2017 15:26
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Writing For Life

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Latest Comments

Monika Schott Change only ever happens forever
25 January 2020
Thanks Rosy. Wonderful analogy of two sides of a coin. The three guarantees we can't escape - life, ...
Monika Schott Change only ever happens forever
25 January 2020
Thanks, Chris. ?
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Thanks, Moni. God bless. Hope 2020 is a great year for you. Stay safe. X
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Beautifully written...change, the one thing that is constant for all of us...