Memories sink back into the soft ground. Sweet must of hay mingles with the sea air. The cold morning fog washes in and out clusters of leafy hemispheres on spines of bark. The smelling salts of horse droppings snap yesterday’s dried twigs. I awaken here to a past I older than I experienced but feel it reach into me and claim me as its own. When the sun breaks through, it shines ancient as I drive away.
In my favorite film, Solaris, by the phenomenal sculptor of time Andrei Tarkovsky, an alien planet is sentient. More than that, it reads the psychology of anyone who crosses its threshold and has the power to make clones from whoever the person is fixated on. When I take exposures of nature, I often think of Earth in this way (are we not its DNA clones in a sense?). That it is a sentient planet experiencing itself through me. That I am its witness. That any image I expose of it is the image it projects. And through the fog of my consciousness, its primal forms emerge like these ghostly trees.
My favorite quote from the book: “Are we to grow used to the idea that every man relives ancient torments, which are all the more profound because they grow comic with repetition? That human existence should repeat itself, well and good, but that it should report itself like a hackneyed tune, or a record a drunkard keeps playing as he feeds coins into the jukebox…”