Thursday, October 23, 2008

The leaves on the sidewalk of the ginkgo tree are shaped like graceful hand fans and are waving at the past.

The ginkgo tree is an older species than we usually walk past. It's around a lot to walk past because it is a half-popular street tree.

Some plants do the male and female reproduction work in every plant, so each plant is male and female both in different parts. Not the ginkgo. There are male and female ginkgo trees. From a human perspective, one stink, in part of its cycle, and the other never stinks.

The reproduction that creates street ginkgos happens off-street, because on street we have only the non-stinky gender.

On street, we've also got litttle leaves of unusual shape that look different, smaller than solo tree leaves often are, of a different kind of shape, old, old.

They look different and are saying hi from a distant past, and they imply a distant future. For a long time, they have been rare in the wild. They have lasted this long as a species partly because they were a beloved tree of Japanese temples for centuries, and now they are pleasant, and frequent on some cit y streets. They go back way before people were around to think in terms of cities, streets and temples. And they point to who knows what, but maybe fine.

A prayer and its answer, they are both.