A sentiment with which all readers of this blog will concur, I hope. It comes from a piece by Kevin Crossley-Holland in 'The Week in Books' column in the Guardian (it's apparently not on their website, so you'll just have to go out and buy the paper!). He is a spokesperson for the Norwegian Christmas tree project in Trafalgar Square ('Look North More Often' being their motto), and writes evocatively of going deep into the forest to select and remove the big tree, and the 'death-in-life, life-in-death' feeling you get at such a moment, when the tree of life is felled but comes to a kind of new life with its lights for the festive season. At such moments, we think of the dreadful year the Norwegians have had, and how bravely they have borne it.
And just to cheer things up, though it is a bit early for the festive season, I append a photo of a delightful tree-bearer I picked up in the Sally Army shop in Majorstua, on my most recent visit to Oslo.