We’re all beset by predacious vines sometime in our lives. Vines limit us, tie us down, and control us. They keep us from growing. They stop us. Sometimes a vine comes with a sweet voice and hides its hunger to use us up completely behind a mask it calls love. Other vines are destructive habits we drape around our own necks.
Vines use the life of another to support their own. Sometimes they’re lush, with beautiful fruit or flowers. But look close, and you will see they can only survive by strangling their host.
Vines are stubborn. You can cut them down, tie them in knots, blast them with cold, or burn them in a fire. They will try and try again to strangle any life not their own.
But spirit is strong, too. And freedom is a beautiful, soaring thing.
This huge live oak has been struggling with parasitic vines for many years. Buck and I took machetes and loppers to the vines, finally liberating its bent spine. You can see how it’s twisted as though blown about by the storms of life. Call it transference or whatever you wish, but I feel it breathe with relief every time I walk by it now that the accursed vines are temporarily at bay. Vigilance, baby, vigilance.