She is known as
the lady of the woods,
a pioneer tree
able to grow
where most other trees
First tree to colonize
Europe and North America
After the last ice age,
she is even able to grow
in the Arctic tundra,
in the highlands of Scotland,
Ireland, and Wales.
She grows quickly and becomes
a nurse tree
slower growing trees.
her delicate twigs and branches,
her leaves are light
and easily carried by the wind.
A single Birch
produces millions of tiny seeds
dangling, like ornaments, in the breeze,
and carried far and wide.
Her life span is similar to humans,
going through youth, maturity and senility,
much as we do.
She seldom lives longer than 80 years.
But fertile and prolific, graceful and nurturing,
our ancestors recognized the Birch
as the embodiment of the female principle.
Sandra Lee Smith
Originally posted February, 2009
Updated September 7, 2018