Elder tree

Elder Tree

by Chris Ellery

Elder Tree embodies a lifetime of experience and observation, dream and fantasy, quest and discovery in the shape of the mystical elder. As the thirteenth and last tree of the Celtic tree calendar, the elder is associated with pain, dissolution, and death. It provided both the wood of the cross and the limb from which Judas hanged himself. But it is also a medicinal tree, source of many folk remedies. And as the tree of the Triple Goddess, its energies are feminine and committed to the blessings and beauties of incarnate life. So it is also a tree of healing, rebirth, resurrection. The paradox of the elder is the crux of this collection, and readers who are paying attention just might experience renewal on the limbs of its many epiphanies. “The lesson of the elder is a difficult one,” says Jane Gifford in The Wisdom of Trees. Perhaps so. Yet it is a lesson that everyone must learn.

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About the Author

Chris Ellery
Chris Ellery is the author of All This Light We Live In and The Big Mosque of Mercy. He has received the X.J. Kennedy Award for Creative Nonfiction, the Dora and Alexander Raynes Prize for Poetry, and the Betsy Colquitt Award. Ellery is a member of the Fulbright Association and Texas Institute of Letters. He and his wife, the Rev. Celia Ellery, live in San Angelo, Texas, where he teaches at Angelo State University.