Kim sat by the wall going around the old churchyard. The year was 2015. She had gone into remission from a serious cancer and she no longer knew who she was. She had been used to climbing mountains, cycling miles, and swimming 30 lengths of the baths each day. Now, she was a shadow of her former self. She needed this time, to meditate and think on what had happened to her. This church was the one where she had been baptised as a baby. As her husband had drawn up in the car, they saw a rowan tree right by the wall. It was so beautiful. Kim loved rowan trees. She loved how they could survive in the most adverse conditions. They were also very pretty especially in the autumn with their bright red berries.
Kim had always been happy in this village, though her parents had left the village when she was only a toddler. Her grandparents had a farm just outside the village and kim found the greatest happiness in her life there. Her family life left much to be desired but her grandmother loved her very much and Kim went to stay on the farm as often as she could. The village was home to her. It was her place of safety and security in the midst of a tumultuous life.
Kim was drawn back and back and back to that spot by the rown tree after she had been there for the first time. On that first occasion she was intrigued to find that the church clock was stopeed at 4.30. That was the time when Kim had been born. How strange. The church clock was no longer working.
As Kim continued to sit by the rowan tree poetry poured out of her and her meditations were so revealing. She longed to come back to this place to live. It was her home. The only home she had ever known. She had no desire at that time to go to a Service in the church, and she was happy just to sit there by the rowan tree. She wrote down all her thoughts as they came. Then she made a discovery. Rowan trees were often planted in churchyard because they were thought to guard all the souls in the churchyard. They had healing properties. Well Kim certainly needed a lot of healing.
Then came the day that she suddenly wanted to go inside the church to see the font where she had been baptised. It was an amazing feeling to look it and to touch it. Here was where she had been given to God as a baby. And what a life she had had since then. A tumultuous life. Certainly not a peaceful one. Inside the church however, she felt such a deep peace. It was beautiful. This here was the antithesis to the life her mother had given her. Her extremely abusive mother. She wanted only to stay in here for ever.
Then the summer came to an end. It was harvest time. Kim had such happy memories of harvest time on the farm. There was to be a Harvest Festival at the church. Kim felt within her a deep desire to go. It was wonderful. As soon as the first hymn started up, “We plough the fields and scatter the good seed on the land,” at the very start of the Service, she broke down. She had been touched very deeply and her memories came flooding back. They were beautiful ones.
Following that, she went to a few more Services. She enjoyed going there so much. It was so peaceful. She had attempted to find the graves of her great grandfater and other family members in the churchyard and she had asked the vicar if he could find where they were. He had no idea at all where they might be. Then one evening, as Kim was sitting once again meditating by the rowan tree, the vicar came by walking his dog. He spoke to Kim cheerily. Then he went into the churchyard and began looking to see if he could see a grave. He knew the surname of Kim’s ancestors and suddenly he stopped right next to the rowan tree. Then he looked up at Kim in surprise.
“Do you recognise the name Frances Hill?” He looked inquiringly at Kim
Kim almost fainted.
“Yes, that is my great grandmother,” replied Kim. Such joy filled her heart. Not only was this lady her grat grandmother, but she was also her godmother. She had offered Kim to God as a baby. All this time she had been sitting by the grave, with poetry pouring out of her, not knowing that her great grandmother was just behind the wall. Kim was overcome. The rowan tree certainly must have mystical powers. She had been drawn here and had written many poems about the beautiful rowan tree. Kim could hardly believe all of this. There was nothing for it. She just had to put all these poems into a book. She didjust that and she created and sold her poetry book called “under the Rowan Tree,” which she went to Craft Fairs with, and sold it for the Lymphoma association as Lymphoma was the cancer which she had had.
Years passed, and Kim was in her seventies. She had been defeated in her attempts to move back to this, her home village. But she discovered that that did not preclude her from coming home in a spiritual sense. She was now 75 years old, and nearing the end of her life, with her body gradually dying. But in her spirit she was now home. This was where she would be buried. This would be where she she would say Goodbye to this world. This was where she would come home to, for ever. On her grave, would be the words,
“Home at Last.”