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Hanna Fahl: In the contrast between guilt and hope are the key to the tree's symbolism

When Melbourne gave all of the city's 70.000 trees own e-mail addresses, the idea was that the public would be able to report to the park staff if the trees looked to feel bad or needed to be trimmed. Instead, people started writing letters, actual letters, to the trees.

the ABC in Australia has collected some of them together with photographs of the affected trees. Some ask the trees for advice, that would be the oracle. Some live on the other side of the world and fantasize about that at some point health. ”Congratulations on the national eukalyptusdagen!”, greet anyone. Some are pure declarations of love: ”You are beautiful. Sometimes sitting or walking I in you and becomes happier. I love how the light looks through your leaves, and how your branches are hanging so low and wide that it is almost as if you are trying to squeeze me.”

the Other borders, the disturbing, to the perverted: ”Babe, I'm sorry you are so ill. Can I climb into you one last time? The scale of the bark for me, baby, it will make you feel better.”

someone who always thought that Treebeard is the second-most attractive character in the entire ”Lord of the rings” I have some understanding.

It is of course possible to antropomorfisera just about anything, attributing to a brick or a gum human traits, if you like, but the right tree is something special. Betydelseladdade tree is a staple in mythologies and religions (from the Yggdrasil to the apple tree in the garden of eden to banyanträdet Buddha sat under), and fictions (from skräckskogar to upplysningssymboler). Perhaps because they have two properties that we are both attracted to and fear: they are rooted and eternal, can survive us all, impossible to move or bend.

And at the same time they are vulnerable, among the clearest and most symbolic victims of mankind's ruthless rampage – ruined in the rain forests, burning, or dry in extreme weather, cut down to make space for megacities. In this contrast between guilt and hope are the key to a lot of tree symbolism.

can the trees act as nature's avenger, the root system that stretches and winds its way menacingly around the legs and drag us down into the earth we should have respected. Or so is the wisdom, the answers to the eternal questions.

Trees in the urban environment seems to be extra loved by us, these single planted reminders of a different life. As the Melbourne-trees with e-mail addresses, almarna in Kungsträdgården in Stockholm. Or in our gardens, as my great-great-fir-tree which he stole as a small plant from any forest and buried at Blomberg, it has a warped top, and cones that are pink in the spring.

Trees in the amount of is harder to really get in touch with on that intimate level. It is, so to say, hard to see the trees for all the woods. All the Swedish forest that burned in the summer, the charred surfaces, they are dramatic and evoke emotion – but not in that anthropomorphic way, not as a single nedhuggen cherished tv-oak.

if all the trees weren't as much trees. That if we treated some tree that they were better, despite the fact that they are all composed of the root, stem, and crown. As if we are just irrational and antisocial in our relationship to them, As if we somehow managed to create an internal logic around the writing of private letters to an individual tree, as if it were a close friend and confidant (”Would you say that there are the branches or the roots, which are your fingers?”), at the same time as we, for example, screwing a cropped julgransstam in a small foot and dance vividly around the mutilated trädkroppen while it slowly dies of thirst in front of our glöggtindrande eyes. Tell me, is it not a strange thing.

Read more texts by Hanna Fahl , for example, that the bad christmas films are the new ugly jultröjorna.

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