I have been working on a new design for my husbands new harp guitar. Years ago I designed this one.
I thought it would be fun to use the Ginkgo leaf for the new one. I love Ginkgo, I planted a tree hoping to see the leaves fall and blow around the yard. They look like little fans.

The blue spot will be in blue black abalone shell. I am excited to see it on the guitar.
Ginkgo has wonderful symbolic meanings.

The Ginkgo tree is a phenomenon, an object of veneration, a sacred tree of the East, a symbol of unity of opposites, yin yang by some seen as a symbol of changelessness, possessing miraculous power, bearer of hope and of the immeasurable past, a symbol of love. Because of all its properties it is associated with longevity.

"my fascination and respect for this unique tree, a living fossil, unchanged since the time of the dinosaurs. It is the sole living link between the lower and higher plants, a symbol of longevity and is seen as one of the wonders of this world."
Cor Kwant
I didn't know that the Ginkgo leaves all fall down at once! I never figured it out. Even though I have had the tree for 5 years. I was always wondering if I had missed the little sweet fans, floating prettily to the ground. I would just notice one day them on the ground. Since it was around the corner I never knew their secret. When I was researching the ginkgo I found this poem about it.
The Consent

Late in November, on a single night
Not even near to freezing, the ginkgo trees
That stand along the walk drop all their leaves
In one consent, and neither to rain nor to wind
But as though to time alone: the golden and green
Leaves litter the lawn today, that yesterday
Had spread aloft their fluttering fans of light.

What signal from the stars? What senses took it in?
What in those wooden motives so decided
To strike their leaves, to down their leaves,
Rebellion or surrender? and if this
Can happen thus, what race shall be exempt?
What use to learn the lessons taught by time,
If a star at any time may tell us: Now.

poem by Howard Nemerov
from "The Western Approaches" , 1975

A dear little poem by Goethe. It was a love poem that he wrote and pasted two Ginkgo leaves on it for his beloved.

This leaf from a tree in the East,
Has been given to my garden.
It reveals a certain secret,
Which pleases me and thoughtful people.

Does it represent One living creature
Which has divided itself?
Or are these Two, which have decided,
That they should be as One?

To reply to such a Question,
I found the right answer:
Do you notice in my songs and verses
That I am One and Two

"In 1815, Goethe gave symbolic expression to his intense relationship with Marianne Willemer, a recently married woman thirty-five years his junior. He gave her a leaf from the ginkgo tree, explaining that, like its deeply cleft yet still whole leaf, he was "single yet twofold." Although it is not known if their relationship was ever consummated, they did exchange love poetry, and Goethe published several of Marianne's poems in his West-East Divan without crediting her authorship." The University of Chicago Press


Anonymous said…
How exciting that you are making a design for your Husband's new Harp Guitar. The Ginkgo leaf is a beautiful choice.
We have several Ginkgo trees in our town...I know where each one is...I love to look at their leaves as I walk by them...this past fall my Husband came back from shopping and brought me a Ginkgo leave that had turned was such a thoughtful and loving gift.
GreenishLady said…
I have loved those trees since a friend first showed me the few tiny trees he had grown. The leaves are truly gorgeous. I love your design.
Karen Owen said…
Beautiful design, Deirdra! You amaze me. When will he have this new harp guitar? I love gingko trees - their color in autumn is beyond compare.

Anonymous said…
Deirda, You are so amazing. How wonderful to be designing your Husband's Guitar.
I love the poetry and story about the Ginkgo tree. I wonder if they will grow in a large pot on the patio.
Love, Carol
Anonymous said…
Gingko what a beautiful idea ...I love it ....I have a little one ;-)

Louloupi ;-)

Popular Posts