One of my favorite times to walk in Golden Gate Park is at dusk. The great, old trees stand tall, silhouetted against the sky, each one uniquely contorted and top-heavy in a delicate balancing act compensating for limbs lopped off over the years by storms and gardeners. I imagine their roots digging into the sandy soil and gripping like toes in a mighty effort to stay erect. Tree pose.
Eucalyptus are particularly graceful, I think. Their foliage, delicate and feathery, drapes downward, catching the slightest breeze. Their bark peels off in shaggy ribbons, revealing smooth pink and blue streaks spiraling around massive trunks. Thank goodness for these hardy, adaptable immigrants who have rooted here, so far from Australia where the species originates. They are truly the backbone of the park’s urban forest.