October 19, 2013

In The Spotlight: Seeing Trees [a book review]

If I could be one thing other than what I currently am (i.e. human), I would be a tree. Specifically a tree of the Douglas Fir variety. But I shan't be picky because a tree is a tree is a tree; they are majestic. I may even, in a truly literal sense, have hugged a tree before out of pure bliss. In the words of the architect of whom built my current residence,

So it seemed fitting that when I came across a book entitled Seeing Trees in the local library, I immediately decided I must take it home. The subtitle was what intrigued me even more: Discover the extraordinary secrets of everyday trees. OK! Fine! Say no more! I'll read it!

Though I am only halfway through the text, I feel the need to immediately share this with you because it is now when the trees are revealing their fall-ish wonders. It is in this season that we really do see the magic of trees when they drop all of their secrets at our feet in the form of nuts and seeds and leaves. These droppings give us mere glimpses of the miracle of life that is normally hidden from our limited view. 

The two authors of this book have collaborated merely because of their love for trees. Nancy Ross Hugo is a columnist and author who has written many books. Robert Llewellyn is an engineer-turned-photographer who has invented a new way of stitching together dozens of microscopic images (with different focal points) into one clear photograph (really, the photographs are mesmerizing). An example of his work:

I would encourage you to read this book, even if all you do is gawk at the photographs. 

On a more personal note, the following are a few moments I have recently captured that have helped me fall just a little more in love.

So next time you find yourself raking up leaves in the yard just to discard them into the trash, take a moment to actually look at the leaf. Pick it up. Smell it. Feel it. Marvel at it.

[Sidenote: Trees are phenomenal beings. How much more phenomenal does that make humans!?!]

And next time I see you, maybe we can hug a tree together!

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