dormancy

The forms of sleep

The forms of sleep

A walk in the winter woods brings on meditation.  The sights are less enlivening, and small things loom larger in the experience.

fungus

In the woods, the forms of the trees—often wind-mangled and mutilated—are easier to see, and the quiet eye settles on bark, dead limbs, and fungus instead of on the showy wildflower or playful birds.

Effulgent grasses (Credit: Celia Her City)

The forms of life, rather than life itself, are plain to see.  The fluffy heads of the dry grasses glimmer in the setting sun.

An acorn and a tree (Credit: Celia Her City)

The furrowed bark harbors a tiny acorn.

Tension of the burr (Credit: Celia Her City)

A burr oak’s bark radiates tension even in its sleep.

thefallen

Elsewhere, downed limbs shed the disguise of life, revealing new beauty.

Union (Credit: Celia Her City)

They speak to us of the unity of all things.

Bare ornamental

Bare ornamental

A weeping ornamental does its work in Hyde Park.  The neighborhood is fretted with many such scenes: trees, once covered with the delicate blooms of spring, now dried up and naked; ivy-veined walls, stripped of their bright cloaks of leaves.  Evergreens, newly powerful, smugly come into their own.  Death mats the garden beds.  Stillness grips all.