I seldom go for a walk that I don’t have to stop and take a photo of a tree stump.
I don’t know what it is that intrigues me about these “used-to-be” trees. Maybe it’s the variety of shapes and colours, maybe it’s the smooth or jagged breaks, or maybe it’s the different sizes that always make me stop and take a closer look.
I believe that it’s the “back story” that makes me want to photograph them. What kind of a tree was this? How old was it when it died? How did it begin life? How big did it get to be? Did children climb it? Did people pose for photos beside it? How many birds rested on or built nests in the branches? Did it bend in strong winds? What was the shape of it’s leaves? What did it look like in autumn? What caused its demise?
“The wych elm’s whole crown was gone, only the trunk left, thick stubs of branches poking out obscenely. It should have looked pathetic, but instead it had a new, condensed force: some great malformed creature, musclebound and nameless, huddled in the darkness waiting for a sign.”
― Tana French, The Witch Elm