Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Family trees in October

Here, I watch the wind blow the leaves from the branches of the trees and gather them in hollows where they await decay or the rake. The colours have peaked, and the few trees that grasp their yellowed leaves will soon be bare. The frequent rains have enlarged the local swamps and the still water mirrors the emptiness above.

Images of change, hibernation, death...
Mom photographs Dad, face down within a giant sequoia as they travel in California this month. What have the lofty branches seen over the millennia? What is the life of a man in comparison to the life of this tree?

Images of constancy, grandeur, insignificance...
Sandland brother sees each tree as a rare gift in a land of sand, rock and sun. Their roots seek out the moisture of a hidden spring or brook, and the green of an oasis assures the traveller of water necessary for life. With vegetation so scarce, the goats have learned to climb trees in order to feast on fresh leaves.

Images of persistence, adaptation, brilliance...
(Read more about tree climbing goats)


  1. I'm still impressed that you managed to take a picture of that swamp (since you dislike them so much)! :P

  2. That photo of your dad is amazing!

    I've never seen the sequoias - hard to imagine they are that large.

  3. I have never seen them either. They must have been very awe-inspiring to cause Dad to take that pose. Our trees here look like toothpicks in comparison.

  4. Anonymous8:47 pm GMT-4

    You've just put a new twist to the phrase "family trees".
    Enjoyed your article. Talked to your Dad a week ago. He never told me how photographic he could be :)

  5. You know how old he is...still pretty agile though

  6. The sequoias are awesome! I still remember their sheer size from a holiday in California when I was very young.

  7. CGP- A child would be dwarfed even more by the giant trees. You travelled a long way for that vacation!


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