They’ve chopped down my tree. Well, the tree in my courtyard. Well, the tree in the courtyard outside my office under which I liked to sit and smoke a pipe on fine sunny days while reading. I loved that tree.

Before (picture taken in 2002 when I began work here – the tree had grown a little since then):


I’m told that “it should have come down long ago.” Apparently it was self-seeded 15 years ago and the roots had begun to play havoc with the drainage and foundations.

There is a time to plant and a time to cut down. I know that. But at the moment I am feeling a bit like this:

when this happened:

About Schütz

I am a PhD candidate & sessional academic at Australian Catholic University in Melbourne, Australia. After almost 10 years in ministry as a Lutheran pastor, I was received into the Catholic Church in 2003. I worked for the Archdiocese of Melbourne for 18 years in Ecumenism and Interfaith Relations. I have been editor of Gesher for the Council of Christians & Jews and am guest editor of the historical journal “Footprints”. I have a passion for pilgrimage and pioneered the MacKillop Woods Way.
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7 Responses to Grief

  1. Clara says:

    I did notice one of the courtyards has a cotoneaster growing in it. I hope that was the plant that came down.

    • Schütz says:

      Well. Now I really feel confused. That’s like finding a picture of a recently deceased family member on the wanted list. How should I react?

      No, it can’t be true. It was my TREE! (Stage One: Denial)

      So, what now? Should I feel betrayed? Deceived? Taken for a fool? And all this time I thought that that… that weed… was a real tree! (Stage Two: Anger)

      Look, I know I can get over this. Just plant another tree for me. Please? (Stage Three: Bargaining)

      I don’t care. It gave me shade. It gave me happiness. And now it’s gone. The courtyard will never be the same again (Stage Four: Depression)

      Oh well. That’s life, I guess. The Lord giveth and the Lord taketh away. (Stage Five: Acceptance).

      Thanks, Clara. I needed that.

  2. Clara says:

    I do sympathise with your distress. If is it any consolation, the removal of the Cotoneaster might give the Japanese Maples more room to develop. They are slow growing but truly beautiful. The ones in the courtyard outside my window are large enough to offer shade . . . perhaps you should migrate. . .

    • Schütz says:

      Is that right? You think that the maples in our courtyard were not growing because of my Tree? Well that would be good. Maybe they could plant another one where my Tree was. I would be happy with that.

  3. Christine says:

    Belated Happy New Year to all.

    I share David’s sentiments, losing a treasured tree is not to be taken lightly!

  4. Shan says:

    There’s a joke here about cutting down a healthy tree because its roots are uncomfortable, but for the life of me I just can’t find it…

    Maybe it obstructed the view from the top?

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