We have a miniature orchard behind our studio. I like to sit there when I’m taking breaks from music on an old rickety wooden picnic table. I think about what I’m working on, or let my mind wander, listening to the birds, watching the bees in the clover we planted as a cover crop. I’ve often recalled the image of the handless maiden stealing the magic fruit by moonlight when I’m sitting there. The trees are still young, but growing stronger and taller every year. We have apple, cherry, apricot, pear, quince and peach. It feels like a magical place, and watching the trees grow their leaves back every spring is like watching a magic trick being performed by Mother Nature before your very eyes. The blossoms in April are incredible, and if it’s a good year the blossoms make way for fruit. While eating a juicy peach in mid-summer, I can’t imagine the leaves turning golden and eventually falling in the cruel trick that is fall, the death card of nature’s birth/death/rebirth cycle. Watching the changes and growth in the orchard has cultivated a deeper connection with the seasons and creatures that inhabit the space. I’ve come to appreciate the seasons of my own life as they unfold in their own spiraling and sometimes surprising way. These meditations in the orchard influence my musical and creativity as well, giving me an appreciation for the seasons of my own creative process in a new way. Tending and fortifying the soil in the spring, watering and weeding, enjoying the fruit of my labor in summer. The eventual shock, and somber beauty of the leaves turning, and then falling as the snowflakes drift down. The pruning and cutting back of the dead wood to make way for new growth in the spring, heralded by pale pink and purple blossoms reminding me that there is always a rebirth after the death of winter.