He was there
in a tree which had just been cut down for road construction. The Man found Him in the tree, took the tree home, and carved Him out of the tree.
He had three short legs with no arms and no head. He tried to walk with His legs, but one of the legs prevented Him from walking well.
The Man asked Him, “Where are you going?”
He answered, “I stayed long in the tree and could not walk.
Now I’m glad to walk with my legs.”
And He stood firm to show off His legs.
The Man had been aware that something alive had been there in the tree.
The Man found Him before his eyes, and felt as if he had met with an old friend.
Since then the Man began to find trees in which His friends stayed, took the trees home, and carved His friends out of the trees.
One day the Man asked them, “Since when have you been there in the trees?”
Out of them [a anjerica tree] answered as follows.
“Long, long ago before you ‘human beings’ appeared on the earth, our ancestors came from Jupiter. [In Japanese, Jupiter is called ‘Mokusei’, which means ‘star of trees’.] Back then it was cold on the earth, with much water. Our ancestors began to live on small lands.
Accordingly, as it became warmer and warmer the ancestors of trees became successful on the earth. After you ‘human beings’ appeared on the earth, the conditions of the earth became worse and worse.”
“‘Trees’ gave shelter and fruit to you ‘human beings’ who had just appeared on the earth.
As it became colder and colder, many ‘trees’ disappeared. Then you began to walk with two legs and went out of ‘forest’. You began to cut down trees to use fire, subject other creatures to your rules, and increase in population. ‘Trees’ could not talk or run away, and continued to be cut down.
Do you know the facts as follows?
Once upon a time when a large meteorite nearly ran into the earth, Jupiter drew the meteorite toward itself. As a result, the earth escaped from being damaged.
On the contrary, the amino acids which compose all creatures on the earth took place because that one of the satellites of Jupiter ran into the earth.”
”We had been there in the trees.
You ‘human beings’ had not found us.
You had no will to find us.
Now you become aware that ‘trees’ bring the real powers and favors to the earth and they are your partners to bring up creatures.
We, descendants of the ‘race of trees’ who have come from ‘Jupiter’, have just appeared. You ‘human beings’ will know more about us. You will cut down ‘trees’ to get us. When ‘trees’ run short, you will bring up more ‘trees’.”[the anjerica tree] finished answering the Man, and became bowlegged as he had always been.
Since then the Man called them “JupitArians”.
The Man, who found the “Jupitarians”, searched for a workshop at the foot of the holy mountain named Mt. Daisen. At last the Man arrived at a small hill after he entered the depth of a small valley.
At the hill the Man found “ruins” which were scattered with some buildings. － No time went by on the hill. ―
The Man settled into the place, and named the hill “JUPITARIAN HILL”.
The Man had searched for “ruins” before, when he had once lived in a large crowded city. The Man had not been good at associating with others, so he wandered around open spaces in the city like sites where factories had once been located, (as if he had been obliged to run into a vacuum).
－These had also been “abandoned places”.
The Man collected many kinds of the “race of trees”;
garden trees and fruit trees which were cut down, lumber out of dismantled houses, bogwoods, drift woods, sacred big trees and so on.
All of them were the kinds of the “race of trees” which human beings had abandoned. The Man devoted himself to carving “Jupitarians” out of such kinds of the “race of trees”.
Some “Jupitarians” stood with two legs. Some were much bigger than others and could be called glorious queens.
The Man also collected several “beasts of Jupiter”, with many legs, on to the hill. Every night they longed for “Jupiter” glittering in the southern sky.
Eventually some “human beings” came to visit the hill to hear about “Jupitarians”.
A gatekeeper, carved out of a stump found in a gingko forest near the hill, received them.
Some of them were astonished when they saw “Jupitarians”. Others liked “Jupitarians” and took “Jupitarians” home.
They were captured by “Jupitarians”.
After the human beings took “Jupitarians” home, the “Jupitarians” stayed at the house pretending to be pets which were arrogant and sometimes amiable to guests. Seeing “Jupitarians”, the guests said, “Cute!” or “Awful!”, and unconsciously patted and stroked “Jupitarians”. Some guests smiled to see “Jupitarians”. Finally the guests asked the host, “Where on earth were they?” and wanted to get “Jupitarians” of their own.
“JUPITARIAN HILL” was located in an area with gentle hills. Several coppices remained among well kept farms. Time went by moderately. The Man admired the expressions of trees and the colors of flowers on the roadsides. The Man liked the ponds that dotted in the area best of all and the Man called the hill “strawberry field”, where a variety of berries bore fruit in all seasons.
After the Man settled into “JUPITARIAN HILL”, birds and winds brought seeds of new kinds of the “race of trees” to the hill, which had little soil on the surface before.
－ Poplars, silk trees, chesnut trees, konara orks, mulberries and zelkova trees, which grew through the crevices of concrete roads, hackberry and cherry trees, which grew immediately next to the support of concrete telephone poles; the Man was surprised by the vital energies of the trees.
Trees were essential to the hill, which was exposed to strong winds and summer sunlights, which became stronger year by year. The Man and his acquaintances dug up a twenty year old Tabunoki which had nearly been cut down in the woods nearby, and brought it to the courtyard of the hill. The Tabunoki became the symbol tree(himorogi) of the hill, which had been a ruin with no large trees, and showed its own large figure under the glittering starry night sky. The Man planted and raised acorn that he had brought home from the forests nearby. (The Man wanted to fill the hill with the “race of trees”)
. Unknown to him, the Man’s acquaintances called him “Man of Trees”.
One day winds carried a scream to this calm hill. “Gyaaah!”
Trees began to be cut down for the investigation of constructing an expressway nearby. The Man heard the sounds of chain saws as the cries of trees. After the sounds stopped, the Man took home a sack of seeds from chinquapins and konara orks that had been cut down, and raised their seedlings.
The Man built a shed on the hill. He made the frame using branches that had been thinned from the forests nearby ,and the walls were made of scrap wood that he found abandoned at warehouses. He thatched the roof with thin bamboo, Japanese pampas grass and cogons that he cut near the hill. He collected branches and dead trees to use for fuel.
Ancient ruins of houses were dug up at a hill nearby.
The Man thought of the lives of ancient people who could use only the things they found around them.
… when the ancient people came to the hill covered with trees for the first time, they dug holes on the south side of large trees, gathered and built with trees cut down using stone tools, and made thatched roofs with bark and grasses. They collected acorns, chestnuts and chinquapins and soaked them to remove the harsh taste. Then they built a fire of branches and dead trees and boiled the nuts to eat. (Chestnut Trees were highly valued for lumber because the wood was waterproof and did not decay easily.)
There were no rivers in the area, but clean, fresh water gushed out from many places on the slopes of the hills. After Mt. Daisen erupted ten thousand years ago, an abundance of water that had been kept under the forest floor melted and began to flow just under the new volcanic soil. The soil in this area was also made of good clay, so the ancient people baked the soil and made [sue ware] out of it.
The Man recalled what the “Jupitarians” had told him about the close relationship between “trees” and “human beings.”
Around the hill were many bamboo groves and forests that people did not enter. Hares, pheasants, weasels and tanuki lived there. When the road construction started on the hills nearby, many wild birds came to escape from the construction. They had dates with each other at the hill with fine views, and when they liked each other, flew away to the bushes nearby. In summer fireflies flew up from the valleys and also had dates on the hill.
The road construction intensified.
The sounds and tremors of heavy machines shook the hill. Trees were cut down and hills were broken down at the construction fields.
It seemed as if bugs named “human beings” were eating away the nature. The road construction cut apart many creature’s connection from the mountains to the sea.
Many animals came to the hill more often than ever before.
One day the Man could not bear the echoing sounds of chain saws, so he went to the construction fields. There he found a big stump left in the center of a coppice that had been cut down.
The stump had been a pair of Japanese Cedars with the bottom of trunks united. The Man was allowed to cut down the stump. The cut end of the stump was a beautiful clear red colour, which is only found in cedars over one hundred years old.
All of the people there were surprised.
…The cedar had been the master of the woods.
Eventually after a few years the expressway was opened to traffic. Before that the hill had been calm and the glitter of the hill had reflected in the night sky. Since then the hill continued to be exposed to the noises and vibrations caused by cars.
—The clamor the Man had escaped from came to him.
A lot of people came to visit “JUPITARIAN HILL” near an interchange of the expressway.
The “Jupiterians” became popular.
The Man who had found “Jupiterians” began to look for trees to carve more “Jupiterians” from.
As soon as he heard trees were going to be cut down, he went and got them. When he heard of straight trees easy to carve or trees which had “Jupiterians” in them that could sell with high price, he got them at random.
It was difficult for the Man to meet orders alone, so he employed some other people. They began to carve out “Jupiterians” efficiently by the assembly line. They carved “Jupiterians” one after another of the same kind, size and shape, and sold them.
“Jupiterians” entered houses where people no longer used trees, and were accepted as mascots which symbolized the warmth and tenderness of genuine trees. But some of the “Jupitarians” carved out by the assembly line were of poor workmanship.
One day the Man was called back by a [Japanese Camellia Jupitarian]who had been thrown away in the corner of the workshop because of being cracked heavily.
“I was cracked so heavily because you have cut me down in summer when I have grown up most of all seasons,” the Camellia Jupitarian blamed the Man.
Next, a [tabuniki Jupitarian] with broken legs blamed, “I lost the strength to stand firm because I was shocked to be cut down during a full moon.”
Then a [Jupitarian of an unknown tree ]who had been rejected because his legs were ill-shaped, also blamed the man loudly, “My legs are ill-shaped because you carved me out without watching my shape carefully. Our shapes differ from one another. But you carve us ALL out WITH the same shape. We ‘race of trees’ did not move from where we were born, so we lived our lives adapting ourselves to our surroundings. You don’t understand how w lived. Don’t carve us out with the same shape.” He continued, “That is our king in the pair of Japanese cedars you brought home from the construction fields.” When he had finished speaking,he stepped back and became still.
The next day the Man brought the couple of Japanese Cedars which had been long out of his mind, to the workshop and became absorbed in carving it. The King that he carved out of the cedars, stood with two legs and had a “symbol” like the Man had never seen. After he finished carving, the Man fell to the ground with excitement and exhaustion.
On the night of the next full moon, the King of Big Cedars was in the center of the workshop. He opened his eyes, which were left from the cut ends of the branches, and made some words…
He walked by himself, saw those kinds of “the race of trees” that had been brought into the workshop and said, “Come in to my sight.” Then the kinds of “the race of trees” came to show their original figures. Amongst them there were pointed, uneven, round and even sexy kinds and many more as well.
All night long they turned upside down and XXXed their sap with one another.
The next morning the Man got up and was surprised to see “the Jupitarians” gathered around the King of Big Cedars. They were moving.
Raising his parts like arms, [a “Beech Tree Jupiterian]said to the Man, “We will carve ourselves by ourselves in our own way. We no longer need your help,” and stood on his hands.
Then “Jupitarians” around him also stood on their hands. They shouted with joy, “POWER TO THE JUPITARIAN!” “POWER TO THE JUPITARIAN!”
Instead of allowing the Man to carve “Jupitarians”, they made him build the “Residence of Jupitarians” on a sunny corner of the southern side of the hill.
The round-shaped residence was built with scrap wood, dead trees and bamboo. A hole was dug deeply in the center of the residence. Part of the roof was cut off so that the hole faced the sky.
Wood shavings, which were made when the “Jupitarians” carved themselves, were piled in the hole. Electromagnetic waves from “Jupiter”, which were gathered through the funnel-shaped roof, poured down on the wood shavings every night.
There they began to raise seeds that were generated from DNA of all kinds of “the race of trees” on Earth. Those seeds grew at a surprising speed.
They were “Super Trees” regarded as the elite of all trees.
The “Super Trees” had vital energies which could bear the environments wasted by human beings. However sterile the land was, they rooted themselves there. They could bear aridness. They absorbed CO2 more than any other trees. They were even vital in cities because they had antibodies against nitrogen oxides.
Above all ,they grew up very rapidly and became big in an instant. They produced lumber of good quality. The lumber was waterproof and rot resistant, so it was used for many purposes. Furthermore, their fruits were very nutritious and delicious.
“Jupitarians” produced many cloned seeds of the “Super Trees” and sold them on the Internet.
The “Super Trees” quickly spread all over the world, and were accepted as symbol trees in areas where people wanted to revive the lost forests. They became representatives of divine spirits. Many kinds of “the race of trees” got together around them and grew up.
At last “Forests of Super Trees” appeared everywhere. Inside supertrees at the center of the woods, “Jupitarians” were stationed all the time as “spirits of trees”, and watched human beings approaching to the woods.
“Jupitarians” hid in the seeds that were sold.
When fierce people approached the trees used caution. They discharged phytoncides with their twigs shaking, and put the fierce people at ease. When familiar people approached, they discharged camphor and gave the people energy.
Children climbed the trees, smiled like monkeys and said, “I feel at ease.”
People found their own special trees which they were fascinated with out of a variety of trees, and regarded these as their guardian trees, as the Celts had once done… .
When the people felt lost they only had to touch the trees and were calmed to feel the connection between both their lives and the lives of the trees.
– end of chapter I –