Be the Tree!

On the bottom of my iced tea lid last year was a quote by the Lumberman’s Poet, Douglas Malloch. It said:

Good timber does not grow with ease. The stronger the wind, the stronger the trees.

Yesterday a friend reminded me of what trees need to go through to build their roots and wood fibers, and this quote immediately came to mind. He was saying that trees have to be allowed to face nature’s assaults to survive, and as Malloch said, so do people. It’s a good reminder of why we sometimes face adversity– it makes us stronger. The storms of life can be intended to build us, not break us.

I found the entire text of the poem at This was a hearty dose of encouragement for me on a challenging Monday, and I hope that it greatly encourages you as well.

Good Timber
by Douglas Malloch

The tree that never had to fight
For sun and sky and air and light,
But stood out in the open plain
And always got its share of rain,
Never became a forest king
But lived and died a scrubby thing.

The man who never had to toil
To gain and farm his patch of soil,
Who never had to win his share
Of sun and sky and light and air,
Never became a manly man
But lived and died as he began.

Good timber does not grow with ease:
The stronger wind, the stronger trees;
The further sky, the greater length;
The more the storm, the more the strength.
By sun and cold, by rain and snow,
In trees and men good timbers grow.

Where thickest lies the forest growth,
We find the patriarchs of both.
And they hold counsel with the stars
Whose broken branches show the scars
Of many winds and much of strife.
This is the common law of life.

©2012 H. Hiatt/ All articles/posts on this blog are copyrighted original material that may not be reproduced in part or whole in any electronic or printed medium without prior permission from H. Hiatt/

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