Hello family, friends, and fans,
Welcome to the official Okefenokee Joe Enterprise newsletter August edition. Don't forget to get your FREE SONG! DOWNLOAD AT THE BOTTOM OF THIS NEWSLETTER, THE SONG ‘IT’S ONLY A TREE' by OKEFENOKEE JOE!
This month's song and transcript is Okefenokee Joe's signature to his true nature as a storyteller. ‘It’s Only A Tree' is also a premiere YouTube video on the Okefenokee Joe Channel for Okefenokee Joe subscribers ONLY! Be sure to catch the screening on August 1, 9:00 PM EST. This video was the final lifetime performance of Okefenokee Joe, at age 90, during a father & sons weekend gathering. Together, the family shared stories, music, and good food over a roaring campfire. Memories of Joe to last a lifetime ~ EARTH DAY EVERY DAY!
ALL OKEFENOKEE JOE's - BOOKS, AUDIO CD's, AUDIO download's, AUDIO Book's, DVD's and SWAMP MERCH. are on SALE at 50% OFF! Visit the SWAMP STORE SALE on okefenokeejoe.com to get GREAT DEALS on EVERYTHING while supplies last!
The following is a transcript from Okefenokee Joe's series of recordings “Swampwise Secrets, Songs, And Stories From The Land of the Trembling Earth”. This is an excerpt from Volume ONE:
ITS ONLY A TREE
One year I watched as near my house about fifty acres of large Slash Pine trees were cut down. It looked as if a battle had been fought there! They hauled all the usable lumber away, and left the branches and other debri behind. Although it looked an awful mess what they had done was actually sound forest management. It made excellent habitat for a lot of animals like rabbits, reptiles, opossums, raccoons, and ground dwelling birds.
“They're only trees, they'll grow back!”
That's what I heard someone say. And it's true, all of nature replenishes itself. Trees are one of “America's Renewable Resources”. All of the trees that were cut down were planted pines, planted by man, with plans to harvest them when it came their time.
Some things in life we take for granted and never really think about until we realize that they are gone. Of course new pine saplings were planted to replace of those that were harvested. But it would take years and years for those planted saplings to grow into trees as large as the ones that had just been cut down.
Looking at that empty space in the forest day after day got me to really start thinking about trees, and all they actually do, and just how important they really are to good old Mother Earth!
Not long after all that land had been clear cut, as I sat on the front steps to my home on Cowhouse Island I found myself admiring the huge Longleaf Pine trees growing in my yard. And I thought to myself,
“They are not gonna' get you guys! No sir!”
Some of those trees living in my yard were over one hundred and twenty feet tall, and their trunks were more than three feet in diameter! They were magnificent! And they were beautiful. My guess is that each of them was at least a hundred years old. I felt almost hypnotized by the beauty of those long deep green colored needles glistening in the sun with a background of clear and cloudless blue sky up above. What a beautiful, majestic and peaceful scene it was, and I thanked God once again for allowing me to be where I was on earth!
Suddenly I became aware of something about trees that I had never noticed or even thought about before. Those big trees in my yard were all Longleaf Pines. They were all the same species, yet not one of them was built exactly the same as the other. Their branches were located in different places, some were taller than others, some leaned one way some leaned another. For the first time in my life it dawned upon me that trees, just like people are individuals! And just like us, each tree has a life story all its own! Some trees in our forests are over five hundred years old. Just imagine how much those trees must have seen in their lifetime! And if trees could talk, what stories they might have to tell!
As I wrote this song, believe it or not, it brought tears to my eyes as I realized just how much trees really do for this earth we live upon! I began to understand how much I had been taking for granted all of God's creation. Yes, they'd grow back, and they did, eventuallly. But they are a lot more than “only trees!”
Purchase "Swampwise Secret, Songs, And Stories from the Land of the Trembling Earth" and other really awesome stuff at the SWAMP STORE SALE.
Okefenokee Joe 1932 - 2023