Monthly Archives: September 2014

A Tree Falls in Baltimore: Ode to a Black Walnut

A version of this essay first appeared in Maryland Life.


The earth is brown and barren now. A nothingness, where recently stood one of the oldest, largest and more storied Black Walnut trees in Maryland. Hallowed ground, where Civil War soldiers once rested beneath its expansive canopy. Where Victorian women in fine millinery sipped lemonade under its branches.

Where just last summer, my three girls and I held hands as we strained to wrap ourselves around the Black Walnut’s massive trunk. The four of us, cheeks pressed against the rough bark, fingertips barely touching, couldn’t close the circle. Continue reading