This plaque is displayed next to The Senator, the tallest Cypress tree in the United States. My husband and I loved our visit to The Senator. The tree is beautiful—it is 118 feet tall and 35.4 feet in circumference. The words on this plaque read, “The National Arborist Association recognizes this tree and commends those who had the vision and the foresight to preserve it.”
I find these words moving because a preserving vision and foresight is something that our culture lacks. This applies to preserving something in nature, but even more tragically, it applies to preserving less tangible things. A family heritage. A good reputation. A marriage. All of these are things that must be preserved, and preservation always requires vision and foresight. It means living less for the thrill of the moment and more with a long-term end in sight. It requires both good reason and a good imagination in order to draw conclusions about how the things we do now will affect the outcome later.