Apple trees grow everywhere here. Huge, splendid, gnarly old trees, fighting the taller forest growth for sunlight and littering the ground with fruit. I've been noticing them from time to time, always with a shock of pleasant surprise in the discovery of their identity, (why, that's an apple tree)! They are especially prolific in the park where we hiked on Monday.

Prince Edward Island National Park was established on the site of an early settlement. Naturally, the settlers wanted fruit trees. Now the settlers are long gone, and even the remains of their houses and fences have been consumed by moss and the slow decay of rain, wind, and time. But the trees remain. Running rampant all over the park, unkempt, rugged, surprising. Apples and peaches spreading their bounty to the wild expanse.

I remarked to Richmond that the apple trees reminded me of the beginning of Prince Caspian, where the Pevensies return to Cair Paravel and find the old, overgrown apple orchard they had planted before they left Narnia. In that moment, I understood a little of what they must have felt. I had a sense of stepping sideways in time - of viewing the past and present bound inextricably together, and rapidly melding with that great unknown, the future. History is always unfolding around us, but I am usually rushed along with the stream of time, heedless to the seamless, mysterious unity of past, present, future. It is not often that I have the chance to step a little aside from the flow of things and get a truer sense of the unfolding.

I wonder what life would be like if I lived constantly with a sense of history - if I thought always of those who will come after me? History (mine as well as yours) is, of course, under God's control. I am content to take the moments as they come, dropping graciously from His hand. Perhaps I should be more diligent to seek His direction in the use of those moments, to make decisions in the light of history.

Perhaps I should spend more time in the company of the past - my feet upon the soil that those long-dead have walked, delighting in the presence of aging, ageless things, reminded that past is also present, and that future surrounds us all.

Oh, and I wrote a poem.