Kids Yoga, Music and the Arts: “Trees” by Lianne Bassin

I wrote the song “Trees” (listen to the song below) many years ago when I was walking across Central Park on a glorious spring day. I was gazing at all of the trees around me, marveling at how human-like they were. Each one had such different characteristics – some were intimidating, scary, big and sharp, rough and loud. Others were swaying in the breeze, gentle and kind, forgiving and welcoming. I looked at each tree and felt overwhelmed by its beauty. Most days I would just walk directly home, not taking the time to look around me. But on this day, for some reason I felt an urge to connect with my surroundings.

I stopped and sat on the grass. I watched all the different people pass by me and stared at all of the magnificent trees towering above me. At that moment, I felt as if I could see each tree’s personality, as different as each of the people passing by me in the park.

One in particular caught my eye. It was small and hidden, and had purplish leaves. I had probably passed by this tree dozens of times on my walk home, and had never stopped to notice how captivating its purple leaves actually were. I felt compelled to walk over and sit under it. I closed my eyes and breathed in. I felt its energy and warmth as if I were sitting next to a dear friend. I smiled. Trees are majestic, long living, rooted, and strong. They weather the storms, and they provide us with food, wood, paper, and air to breathe. They are absolutely amazing!

As I sat, I wondered whether the trees could also feel my presence. And if they could, would they be as amazed by me as I was by them? I still ponder this question and use it during my yoga classes. Before we get into tree pose, I ask my students to tell me some words that they think of when they look at a tree. Some examples might be, “strong,” “rooted,” “swaying,” “welcoming,” or “comforting.” I then ask them to think of some things that trees give to us. Some examples could be, “air,” “wood,” “paper,” “pretty leaves,” “shade,” or “beauty.”

As we transition into tree pose, I say:

“Imagine yourself embodying your favorite tree. Feel strong and rooted, and feel swaying, welcoming, and comforting. You are still, and you watch the people pass by you. What do you think of these people? Are they silly looking? Are they interesting? How do they act toward you? You provide them with so much! What do you wish they would give you in return?”

This song was originally written for both children and adults. I included it on my children’s album because I believe it encourages children to develop a relationship with nature and to cultivate a curiosity about their surroundings.

Lianne's new CD, “Breathe In” will be released on June 20th. And in the meantime, please visit Lianne's website for more on Lianne, her work, to join her mailing list, listen to more of her amazing music and read some incredible testimonials on the new CD, “Breathe In”!

To LISTEN to the song, “Trees” click HERE:

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