Yesterday I took a walk at Tower Hill, a bushland reserve near my home in southern Australia. As I started out on the trail I remembered how an environmentalist I know once called it ‘a very compromised site’. He was referring to the fact that the area was so heavily cleared in the early years of white settlement it became a desolate waste land by 1960s. Since then it has been replanted but many exotic weeds and huge cypress trees remain.
Walking through the landscape I decided it was becoming a hybrid forest – some strange mix of Australian natives and exotic plants co-existing together in an unlikely harmony.
As I walked deeper into forest I thought about some New Age people I know who talk about connecting with the spirit of Tower Hill. I am not entirely sure what they mean but the idea intrigues me. I decided to see if I could somehow intuit just what that spirit might be, or perhaps, to put it more accurately, what that spirit is for me.
Yet I kept seeing spots weren’t easy to look at – wild jumbles of mixed plants competing with each other and whole hillsides where huge yarrow and fennel plants desiccated dismal brown in the late summer heat rattled together in the wind. Whatever the spirit of Tower Hill is, it seemed to be to be still evolving – still finding itself
I sat awhile upon a fallen tree branch wondering about the spirit of the place. It came to me that the spirit of Tower Hill (as I perceive it) is the spirit of regeneration and the energy of rebirth.
For me, it is a place that gives me hope for the future.