The Tree at Casa Blanca Library

CB Library Tree of Knowledge.jpg


"The everyday and sacred stroll the streets of Casa Blanca."




Thoughts from musician
Walter Cabal

Not sure where things began to click for the other singer songwriters, but it really began with a tree for me. There is a tree  at the center of the bustle at the Casa Blanca library. Fruits hang from the branches, and mijitos, and abuelos, and madres and everyone in between have sat beneath it. Branches reach outward like many children stacked on each others' shoulders - brown arms outstretched and wrists dangling. Each hand holding an orange fruit.

Of course, the tree is painted on a wall of the Casa Blanca Library.  There are adages written on the fruits. There is something about brotherhood, something about age. I can’t remember the words, but I internalized those fruits in this paradigm shift: That the everyday and sacred stroll the streets of Casa Blanca. You’ve got to have the eyes to see. 

Casa Blanca asks that one not be fooled by worn down, repainted walls, crow’s feet, yellow grass, wire fences or the legato Hispanic accent of the people who ask me what I’m doing playing outside of the Library. If Casa Blanca were a teenage kid who I already categorized by his slouched swagger and stone face as at ‘tough guy’ – well that kid might look at me in the eyes, and whisper “You don’t know me” - then walk away leaving me in the wake of his sad whisper. But if one really looked, if one really heard he could hear the small hanging note that asks for resolution. It sounds something like, "Can you see me?"

I’m supposed to be an artist, and I’d like to think I can see meaning in mundane things, but if I'm honest - sometimes I'm blind, and if I am led by other's impressions of these place I am being led by the blind.

Casa Blanca and it's families are a riddle, a secret with no immediate answer, but only because Casa Blanca is a secret too rich to be babbled about mindlessly. It's a hint of something familiar. The bleeding of gold light into the dark hallway from a closed bedroom door. The orange ghosts of sunlight outside of closed eyelids.

The everyday and sacred stroll the streets of Casa Blanca.

That became a lyric in a song I wrote called “Oh, Casa Blanca”. 

You see the painted tree in the library got me thinking about how much rich nectar goes un-noticed in Casa Blanca. The place is quite literally a haven, especially in the library during the summer - four words: Shade and air conditioning. When I think of a tree and a haven I scratch my head, and I think about why that sounds familiar to me, and then I recall a Scripture:

"To what shall we liken the kingdom of God?  Or what parable shall we picture it? It is like a mustard seed which, when it is sown on the ground, is smaller than all the seeds on earth; but when it is sown, it grows up and becomes greater than all herbs and shoots out large branches, so that the birds of the air may nest under its shade" Mark 4:30-32

The everyday and sacred stroll the streets of Casa Blanca. Can you see it? He with an eye let him to look and see.