Memories of Forests and of Growing Small

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Storybook Trees

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Since a young girl, I have always been intrigued by imaginings of size.

In nature, I loved to imagine how it would look to be grown tiny, and dropped into these places. I would often kneel, gazing deeply into small mossy nooks, through curled hillside bilberry strands, into tangles of branches and thorns. At the beach, I would find those deep, crusted and feathered green pools, gaze and mentally sink under the water and swim. I loved, and still love, to imagine a world changed size, trickle become river, thorn become tree..

Life to a spiders eye, a flea, a worm.

Sometimes, in bed at night, I had half awake dreams of becoming larger and smaller. My eyes tight closed, I lay and imagined. I could feel my hands, my legs, my torso, growing, then shrinking. Sometimes fast, sometimes slow.

It was almost a surprise to open my eyes and find myself the same size, I believed the imaginings so much.

My mum and I would play with pine cones in the wood near to our house, stacking them up to make “houses”, and singing the poetry by Pooh,

“Here is a myst’ry

About a little fir-tree

Owl says it’s his tree

And Kanga says it’s her tree”

I had forgotten all these things somehow, until my visit to the woods, and this picture came to be.

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18 thoughts on “Memories of Forests and of Growing Small

  1. Wonderful misty woods, and a dark elusive figure guarding a moss covered stump. What will happen when the sun sends a shaft of light into the clearing left by the woodcutter? Such an eloquent picture and words from memories that obviously made you smile when they came to the fore.

    Very nice feeling,

    Jim

    1. What great thoughts – yes there is always a mix of emotions when reflecting on old memories, that is the nature of them I suppose..I love your words here, thankyou..

  2. This was a thoughtful and honest post, Cath. I was especially struck by one of your lines–words which flow in the veins of so many great photographs:

    “I had forgotten all these things somehow, until my visit to the woods, and this picture came to be.”

  3. You really drew me in to this one, Cath. Thanks for the kind invitation. I, too, remember thinking small many years ago, and I still try to capture that magic whenever there’s an opportunity. It’s a gift, and a talent well worth exercising.

  4. Cath, I “liked” this one so much when I first saw it that words escaped me. They still do but this photo, with your words of childhood imaginings, is heartbreakingly beautiful. And always such a pleasure to revisit!

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