Leaning Towards The Sun

Heliocentric V

aleXander hirka


photo AleXander Hirka

The tree had its branches trimmed many times over the years, yet its trunk continued to bend more towards the street, towards the open sky and sun over the shorter building on the other side.

Eventually, the entire tree was leaning at a seemingly dangerous sixty degree angle.
Arborists from the Botanical Gardens met with a block committee and it was admitted that the tree should get cut down.

He lived about a mile away and only walked on this street on rare occasions. The street was tree-lined and while he had made note on occasion of how much that one leaned, he never gave it much thought.

Today as he walked the block he was struck by the empty space, only a large stump left behind, with shavings from the recent sawing, some small branches, and leaves scattered about.

He stopped and slowly counted the rings. This tree had made one hundred and thirty six trips around the sun. He wondered what was around this area when the tree was young, how it survived.

When he got home he did the math and looked up the date—1882.
It was the birth year of Virginia Woolf, Igor Stravinsky, James Joyce, Bela Lugosi, A. A. Milne, and endless many others; including an unnamed tree that outlived them all.


© AleXander Hirka 2019. All Rights Reserved.

Heliocentric Redux 2019
Heliocentric. October 2018 writing project — one short sketch a day, under 250 words each, circling like a planet around The Sun.



aleXander hirka

Writer, visual artist, philosopher, autodidact, curmudgeon. More than half of what i do is make believe. https://alexanderhirka.nyc