Wishing Trees

The Wishing Tree of Argyll, Scotland

Mr. Big and I were talking about wishes today and he was feeling a little disappointed (hearing a three-year-old say “wishes don’t come true” is about the saddest thing you’ve ever heard). It’s hard when you are wishing for full-sized pet sharks or real dinosaurs and you don’t get them–I guess it can really shake your faith.

All that talk about wishes reminded me of a story I read last year about “wishing trees” in Hong Kong where write their wishes on paper tags and hang them on the tree’s limbs. There’s a similar tradition in several Asian countries and in the British Isles and Ireland, people drive coins into wishing trees to leave their wishes.

Close up, surface of English wishing tree

Yoko Ono's Wish Tree Project

As part of her “Imagine Peace” project, Yoko Ono also has a traveling “wish tree” which can now be seen at the Museum of Modern Art in New York and will continue to travel around the country.

Because of the ephemeral nature of paper (and wishes), there don’t seem to be that many permanent wising trees to visit in North America, but I did find this one in Ontario. Much easier to find are shoe trees–more on that subject later!

A temporary wishing tree at the Glastonbury Festival in England


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One response to “Wishing Trees

  1. What a lovely idea for a blog post. What a lovely idea, come to that! I’m sorry Mr. Big doesn’t get his shark. Life really is a trial sometimes…

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