Dana Lyons, an author and musician, was inspired while camping in the Pacific Rain Forest to write this book. Forewords by Julia Butterfly Hill and Pete Seeger testify to the spiritual power of the text, along with the stunning illustrations by David Danioth, an instructor at the Art Institute of Seattle.

In one of our favorite scenes in the television version of The Autobiography of Miss Jane Pittman, this old black woman explains why she talks to a tree: " When you talk to an old oak tree that's been here for all these years, and knows more than you'll ever know, it's not craziness; it's just the nobility you respect." That's the spirit that comes across loud and clear on these pages.

An ancient Douglas fir ponders the cycle of life in the Pacific Rain Forest: the river that flows near him; the wind, the fire, and the snow of 800 years; the return of the salmon every summer; watching the young owls learn to fly; feeling the claws of the grizzly; hearing the lone wolf's cry; seeing the great glaciers melting; and meeting the lightning eye to eye. Then the sound of bulldozers makes the tree apprehensive that an entire way of life and the interdependence among the beings of the forest are in danger. But help is on the way and more help will be needed in the years to come.

This inspirational book elicits awe in our hearts and minds. It draws us into a close feeling of empathy with the Douglas fir and challenges us to do what we can to make sure that these elders are not cut down or destroyed in the name of progress. Other species in the story are also in danger of disappearing. The Tree has won the Earth Hero's Award.