Our trees hold stories that I remember and I'm trying to write them down.
In parenthesis, the name of the tree in Italian and then in dialect (which sometimes I don't know).
The olive tree (l'ulivo, la live) in front of our childhood bedroom balcony, an old man's face. It's the one that Ilaria and I had to avoid when climbing down the balcony.
The eucalyptus (l’eucalipto), my grandma Innesuccia was scared it was going to fall on our house when it was very windy.
Another olive tree (l'ulivo, la live). The one that's hollow at its base where the cats would have their babies.
One of the palm trees (la palma). Under its big leaves, the cats would move their babies when Ilaria and I found the olive tree kittens (cats look for another nest for their babies if they smell someone has touched them, they feel threatened).
One of the pines (il pino, lu pine). After my mom died, I ran towards it, sat down leaning onto its trunk, and cried and screamed.
All the pines (i pini, li pine), which we would replant in the backyard after Christmas, those years we used to use real pines for the Christmas tree. We stopped when there was no more room for pines in the land around the house.
One of the willows trees (il salice, lu salce) which was my favorite when I was little. This willow is dead now - my dad says willows need a lot of water, there hasn't been enough rain in the past years, and he can't water the trees.
The big old oak (la quercia, la cerqua) in front of the house entrance, which means I am home, we arrived, we are here. In the fall, our neighbors' dogs and cats take naps on the pile of golden leaves. The tree is more than a hundred years old, it was there before my parents built the house.
The little oak (la quercia piccola, la cerqua zulla) that my parents planted the year I was born. We are the same age. I recently learned that it's suffering because it's not getting enough oxygen, tucked between the big old oak and the linden tree. It's thin and stretching, all crooked, towards the sky.
The cherry tree (il ciliegio, lu cirice) which Ilaria and I would climb and my mom would take photos of us on it when it was in bloom.
The hedge (la siepe) all around the house, which was so mysterious because we couldn't cross it - even if the dogs would dig tunnels under it and escape - and where we would lose our volley balls.
There's more but i'm doing this little by little.
The eucalyptus tree. Is it going to fall and hurt people? Is it going to fall? Is it going to fall?
I wake up in the middle of the night and go to the window to see if it's still standing. I stay there. My paternal grandmother used to do the same, she was afraid it would fall when it was windy.