Peter the Pine Tree

The crack of the Southern Yellow Pine’s trunk echoed off the cliffs.

Peter the Pine Tree hadn’t fallen this far since he was a pine cone, and just like that day so many years ago, he couldn’t wait for what happened next.

Peter wasn’t a normal pine tree. He didn’t want to stay planted in one place all his days. He wanted to be part of something bigger than the forest.

Peter was trimmed and treated, sanded and primed, put on a truck and hauled down the road.

He was so excited for his new adventure that he bounced around the truck and almost jumped onto the road.

Peter was raised and set upright next to a railroad track. He was fitted with new man-made branches to hold the buzzing wires that went on for miles and miles.

Peter loved those wires. They brought light and music and long distance phone calls from loved ones afar to the houses across the street.

The years passed, the city grew, and every so often the wires were replaced. But Peter noticed that some poles were taken down and weren’t replaced. Trenches were dug and wires were buried. Towers were built and phones were in pockets instead of kitchens.

For the first time in his many years, Peter was worried. He loved his job, and he didn’t know what would happen next.

One sunny morning, Peter watched the wire slip from his branches. He was lifted and lowered, hauled and dropped. Then he was cut and sanded until his edges were square and his measurements just so.

Peter fit snuggly with his fellow trees on the truck as he was hauled away. He felt small and stiff, convinced that he would be stuck on the ground as a railroad tie.

The truck came to a squeaky halt on the site. Peter was unloaded onto the ground and he was sure he was destined to hold a rail until his rotting days.

But before long, Peter was fitted with straps and raised higher and higher until he was settled into the place reserved just for him–a crossbeam to keep the roof overhead. Five heads to be exact.

After a few months of hammering and setting, decorating and homemaking, they all moved in.

The squeals and laughter rose to Peter as he watched the lights turn on and off, and the music played on.