The Los Angeles neighborhood of my childhood was not my true home; I was certain of it. That's not to say that I felt/hoped/believed myself to have been adopted. No, I was certain I was disguised (against my will) as human.
So everyday I searched for signs in the garden, convinced my real lineage was seared here and there into the flesh of this earth, in this dimension. And one day those clues would be revealed, and I would know and in that instant be transported home to my real family in my true form. Sometimes the message would be in a massing of petals in the cracks between middle-class patio stones.
Other times I'd notice the way bare shrub branches curved against a mossy wall.
As I grew a bit older, the messages became more complicated, the syntax of limbs and lichen, rigid stone and flowing wood confounding my best efforts to decipher the code surely left for me.
Even simple tree trunks drew yet resisted my attention.
The years passed and the evidence that I was simply a human female gained credibility, while the symbols promising a more genuine sense of myself remained inscrutable. I didn't even have a superpower; and tree bark became just tree bark.
However, once I picked up a camera, plant portraits soon took the place of family vacation snapshots. Studying these silent images through a lens seemed to bring something into focus.
Water drops became worlds and leaf surfaces were dark matter revealed.
Or they're just a way of attracting pollinators. And rain that beads up on leaves says more about surface tension and texture than interstellar mapping. And tree bark is the skin of tree guts. I know this.
But I also know that imagination sometimes feels like memory. And memories can shape the deepest parts of ourselves.
I'm also someone who if (when?) she heard that distinctive Tardis wheeze, would SO turn around expecting to see Doctor Who. First I'd demand to know what took him so long, and then all those lost languages and unreadable texts would come into focus. I'd remember who and what I was. And I would be home.
Love the Lady's Mantle!ReplyDelete
Thanks, Yvonne! I just realized today that I have a few more as volunteers in other beds.Delete
What a profound thought. I am sure if you were some other species, it would be a reward for all you care you give to your environment. It would be nice to have been a butterfly. I guess a tree would be nice since they have a long life, but a butterfly is preferred by me. Your images are wonderful. Seeing beauty in ways others just pass by. Too busy to notice....ReplyDelete
Thank you so very much, Donna. Thank you for your kind, understanding words. And for the butterfly-self that graces your work.Delete
Not sure you're of this earth yet, but your pictures sure are beautiful!ReplyDelete
Thank you, Ira. ;-)Delete
I never realized till I came out here to the PNW for a short visit, that it was where I had been meant to live my whole life. Too bad I spent my first 50+ years in New England, with its nasty, brutish winters. Thanks for sharing your photos and your thoughts.ReplyDelete
Thank you so much for vising my blog and for your lovely comment! Yup, same with me. There was absolutely no period of adjustment when I moved up here. It just seemed right.Delete
Great, thought-provoking post. For myself, when I moved to Chicago I realized a was truly a Midwesterner who had been kidnapped as a baby and smuggled out to New York.ReplyDelete
Thanks, Jason. Isn't that unusual? Don't most NYers fear the opposite happening? Well, I knew you were special.Delete
I wonder if being a creative means we look at everything around us in a different light....beautiful post Emily, and of course, gorgeous photos.ReplyDelete
Thank you so much, Jen! I definitely think so. Or maybe it's a light that just encompasses more possibilities?Delete
This is very interesting. I've moved 17 times and am not sure if any of the places I've lived are where I'm meant to live. I've never watched Dr Who but if a giant blue phone booth suddenly appeared I don't think I'd hop in. But if a magic wardrobe showed up, I'd run right through. :o)ReplyDelete
An oblong box that's bigger on the inside--same thing just different cultural reference? Wow, 17 moves, Tammy? Military child or adulthood? Or maybe you're still just searching for the really right garden? Like I've said before, the NW is really nice. And I'm sure I could scare up some magical beasties for you!Delete