When trees shed their leaves, they reveal beauty inaccessible in full leaf. People do the same when they shed their clothes. It doesn’t matter whether the tree is gnarled and imperfect, any more than whether the person is wrinkled and worn.
The heartwood of the trunk is as perfect and pristine as it was a hundred years earlier, just as the person’s heart is clean and pure and unmolested by the ravages of time.
And, when a person sheds the protective layers of emotional armor developed over a lifetime of responses to pain and uncertainty, the beauty that remains is stunning.