Amy Saunders 2018
There was once a little boy and a tree. The tree lived in the park, near the little boy’s house. The little boy and the tree were friends. They would do everything together. They would adventure together, they would play together, they would sleep together and the boy would even eat the mangos off her tree. The tree gave him everything, but most of all she gave him happiness.
It was decided one day that the little boy should start school. He was afraid that starting school would tear the tree and him apart, but it did the opposite, it made them closer. Every day after school, he would run to go and see the tree. And every day the tree would wait for him. They would do what they always did, and play together. The little boy loved to climb her trunks and tell her all his secrets. And each day the boy would tell the tree what he learned at school and told her about his new friends.
The little boy would tell her stories and so would the tree. She would tell him all of the funny things she saw people do in the park. She tells him about all of the funny and weird conversations people have. It would make the boy laugh every time, which made the tree happy. However, there was always one thing that they both knew but did not want to say aloud, that one day the boy would have to move on and start his own life and that would mean he would have to leave the tree.
It was time for the little boy, who was not oh not so little anymore, to go to university to start his own life. The boy knew he had to tell his dear old friend but did not know have the words or the nerve to. The boy stalled and stalled for weeks and weeks trying not to tell her. He knew he had to, so one day the boy came to the tree crying and asking her for help. The tree asked him “what’s wrong?” the boy replied and said, “I’m moving away.” The tree felt sad but she wiped his tears away, wrapped her leaves around him, and gave him a big hug.
Weeks later, it was time for the boy to leave and go and start his own life. The tree felt sad but all she wanted for the boy was to be happy. So he left her with a wave goodbye and was off. The boy went to go study a job in engineering. The tree was so proud of him.
Years later, the boy was all grown up and became an adult. He had a wife and two kids. One boy and one girl, he did not really think much about the tree anymore. He rather forgot about her. She was so lonely and did not have many visitors. The only visits she got were local house owners and their dogs that would pee on her. The tree often thought about the boy, wondered what he was doing, and wondered if he had children of his own.
It was one day that the boy’s son asked him who were his friends when he was younger. So he sat his son down and told him the story of him and his best friend the tree. He told him about how great she was, how she would always tell him the funniest stories, how she would give him her mangos when he was hungry, how she would let him lay in her shade, how she was the best friend anyone could ever ask for.
The next day after work, he drove to his old park. He was really looking forward to reuniting with his friend that he ran to where she used to live and stopped abruptly. He was shocked to see what he saw. He fell to his knees and started crying, he was distraught. What lay in front of him was not his old friend with beautiful branches and leaves, but a tree stump. His tree had been chopped down. She was all but gone. He ran to her, put his hand on the stump and said softly “I’m so sorry”
He was surprised to hear her voice as she replied with “don’t cry, I was cut down because the people wanted to make space for a new climbing adventure park and people didn’t think that children should climb trees anymore, that it was too dangerous.” They sat and talked and he told her about his family and job and how his life was going and she was happy for him. They sat until it grew dark and it was time to say goodbye. “I wish you would grow again and be the beautiful tree you used to be” he whispered and kissed the stump.
The grown man hugged his old friend and as the tears rolled down his face and in between the crevices of the stump he noticed a tiny green stem begin to uncurl slowly. He watched as the stem began to grow wider. I needed your tears to give me life again she said. “Wait, I have an idea” the man said. I am going to go home and fetch my trailer and come back, dig you up and move you to my house. There you can continue to grow in my safe yard where no-one will cut you down ever again and you can be friends with my children and share your stories and adventures just like you and I once did.” “That sounds like a lovely idea” she said.
The man and the tree were once again united and she looked even more beautiful in her new garden. Each day the man would go outside and spend time with her.
In the book, The Outsiders Hinton suggests that there is little hope for those brought up in a world of poverty. The Outsiders is the story of the orphaned Curtis brothers. They belong to a gang of the East side Greases, and the novel focusses of their struggle to stay together as a family and face the economic hardship and violent conflict with a rival gang, the wealthy west side Socials. Ponyboy sees injustice on a daily basis. His parents are dead, Darry is forced to work two jobs to support the brothers, Soda has dropped out of school, and the greasers are looked upon as "white trash." He explains that the gang warfare is actually warfare between the economic classes. Because he is from the poor, East Side of town, his place in life is unfairly predetermined. “Suddenly it wasn't only a personal thing to me. I could picture hundreds and hundreds of boys living on the wrong sides of cities, boys with black eyes who jumped at their own shadows. Hundreds of boys who maybe watched sunsets, looked at stars, and ached for something better. I could see boys going down under street lights because they were mean and tough and hated the world, and it was too late to tell them that there was still good in it, and they wouldn't believe you if you did.” Ponyboy realizes that there is little hope for the boys who grow up on the wrong side of town.