Monday, July 4, 2016

Carpe Diem #991 Alder

Dear Haijin, visitors and travelers,

Welcome ... I hope you have had a great Sunday. Today we will explore the beauty of another beautiful and mysteriously mystical tree ... the Alder. The Alder is also part of the Celtic Ogham secret language of the druids and has a deeper meaning which I hope to explain to you and by doing that I hope to inspire you and open up your eyes for our mysterious nature (as is the theme for this month).

The Celtic meaning of the Alder deals with giving and nurturing among the sacred Ogham for many reasons. Namely, its root system provides rich nutrients to the soil, more so than other trees. The alder can successfully restore poor soil conditions back to healthy Ph levels.
Primarily a wetlands and swamp tree, the alder's root system is often submerged in watery areas. As such, the Celts observed their roots serving as intricate shelter systems to fish, specifically trout and salmon. Further, the alder's leaves easily decompose in the water providing rich nutrients to all manner of water creatures.
These acts of generosity and shelter against harsh conditions can be translated in our own lives. By simply standing firm in our own positive environment, we can affect those around us in positive ways. By emitting our signals of tranquility, and peace, we are enhancing the lives of others just be sheer association.
Although it is primarily associated with the element of water, the alder gracefully crosses into the realm of air and fire as well.

Alder and Ivy
For example, ancient legend indicates the wood of the young alder is traditionally used for crafting whistles, pan flutes and recorders. This establishes the alder's claim to the air element. Within the realm of fire, the alder's coloring transmutes into a fiery orange after it is cut, indicating to the Celts that the alder secretly harbors sacred flame within its flesh. To prove the point, the alder (although a poor firewood) makes a pristine grade of charcoal, and was perfect for steadily hot conditions utilized to forge fine Celtic weaponry.

In this respect the alder reminds us that we have hidden powers within us that if tapped, provide magnificent resources that allow us to live out our highest ideals.

We are all haiku poets and our goal is to catch the beauty of nature that's surrounding us in just three lines. In a way the haiku is the same like the Alder. In our haiku there hides knowledge and wisdom, but also spirituality.

For this episode of Carpe Diem I love to challenge you to create a haiku in which you have hidden a deeper knowledge .... maybe a spiritual layer ... it's up to you. Try to "contact" your inner spiritual knowledge and bring it out in the open in the hidden way of the Alder ... "the haiku under the trees".

Of course I had to try it myself and it wasn't easy to reach the goal I have asked you in this episode. So ... maybe ... it was to much to ask for.

ivy and alder

© Chèvrefeuille

I have tried to bring a deeper meaning into this haiku in which I brought Ivy and Alder together, both strong trees (bushes) and they make each other stronger. The Alder hides secret knowledge which can help us to change and the Ivy makes that secret knowledge stronger because of its spiraling growth. Ivy literally embraces the Alder, using its strength, but making it stronger also.

This episode is open for your submissions tonight at 7.00 PM (CET) and will remain open until July 9th at noon (CET). I will (try to) publish our next episode, a new Tokubetsudesu episode, later on.


  1. symbiosis
    ivy and alder

    This is a very good haiku.
    Valentina Ranaldi-Adams

  2. Carpe Diem #991 Alder:

    shiny moonlight
    flickering in the alder wood
    the common white wave