Posts Tagged ‘mystery


Something greater perhaps…

“With Nature as the symbol of all of harmony and beauty that is known to man…where the Reign of Mystery supersedes the Reign of Law.” Henry Drummond (Snake River, Idaho)




The blackbird whirled in the autumn winds.
It was a small part of the pantomime….

When the blackbird flew out of sight,
It marked the edge
Of one of many circles.

Wallace Stevens



The Unknowns

“One is never afraid of the unknown; one is afraid of the known coming to an end.” Jiddu Krishnamurti

“…face the absence of precise answers with a certain humility.” Arthur Miller

“Wheter outwardly or inwardly, wheter in space or time, the farther we penetrate the unknown, the vaster and more marvelous it becomes.” Charles A. Lindbergh

hole in the wall-rock-hole-photography-SwittersB


Fungus Among Us…………

During yard work, I turned over a row of pavers. Beneath one was this creeping growth. Nothing was growing above ground or between the well joined seams of the pavers. This ‘creature’ was growing under the pavers that had been in place for almost 30 years. Almost like the surface of Mars and some ancient forest. No light, plenty of dampness beneath the paver. I frankly don’t know what it is…the Fungus Among Us just sounded fun.



Babbling Brooks: On they go…………..

babbling brook sb

“Once there were brook trout in the streams in the mountains. You could see them standing in the amber current where the white edges of their fins wimpled softly in the flow. They smelled of moss in your hand. Polished and muscular and torsional…In the deep glens where they lived all things were older than man and they hummed of mystery.” 

Cormac McCarthy, The Road


Photography, Hiking & A Mystery: A Marker to What?

I took my wife hiking-bushwhacking to a remote area that was quite historical over a hundred years ago. Now it is an overgrown area, that only a few history buffs and artifact diggers know of. We found an old short handled shovel and some tin pieces, but none of the pottery pieces and such that use to litter the area…this private, overgrown area.

marker in the woods SB I have it on good authority from an avid area historian that certain workers were buried up in these dense woods with their keepsakes and possessions in unmarked graves. This belief must be known by others because at one time, I encountered digging sites and some artifacts, but nothing to denote a grave.

So, this gawdy vision in the distance, moving with the cold wind caught our eye. Now what are the possibilities for such a marker well off the beaten path?

shrine sBNow to clarify the decorative trappings: a small plastic princess crown that said “Happy Birtday”, A deflated, mylar balloon that said “I love you”, a deflated, mylar balloon that said “Happy Mother’s Day”, a deflated, mylar balloon for the Oregon State Beavers (OSU) along with the strung garland. 

So why this spot out in the woods with no discernible trail to this spot?

Was this the end point of some Geo Tag Scavenger Hunt for Mom? Was this a one time favorite haunt for Mom so the family decided to celebrate her Birthday or Mother’s Day in the dense woods? Hmm? Was this where Mom came to, this place of solitude to end her life? Or was this where someone else decided to end Mom’s life? A shrine to Mom.

This is not your ordinary littering. This is someone marking a spot and leaving the markings behind in a manner that, for them, over rides the no-no in these parts of ‘defaming’ nature’s visuals. This is a flaming reminder to Mom amongst the earth tones of Fall.

Or perhaps you have a similar experience and know right away what this was about? Either way, a creepy little discovery of remembrance for someone unknown to us.


Cemetery History & Taverns, Motels and KMart

Pioneer cemeteries and photography combine, for me, into a series of unanswered questions each time I stroll through the almost always empty cemeteries.

Today, I visited three such cemeteries in the Portland area. All the designated ‘pioneer’ cemeteries were primarily recipients of folks born in the early to mid 1800’s and then their children born around WWI.  

I was struck by a few observations for these three cemeteries: they were now surrounded by industrial, commercial enterprises…the designation of ‘pioneer’ seemed lost amid the flow of semi-trucks, transients, strewn beer cans…the trees were old, gnarly and offered privacy to the noisy traffic within a few feet of the Oregon Pioneer headstones. 

old markers tavern SB

These old pioneer grave markers are adjacent to this billious yellow tavern and a seedy motel behind it.

As I have noted before, these are not old graves compared to other parts of the country or world. But, for the Oregon Territory these were the early settlers and most names today were unknown to me excepting a very few: Wilkes, Zimmerman, Reynolds. A good outing with a few finds that were poignant or provided images of tragedy.

Dunbar Kids Pass SB

Here three children pass within a few days of each other. An epidemic, some other tragedy? Apparently someone else researching the same family wondered the same thing.

Zimmerman Pioneer SB Motel

True pioneers that settled east of Portland (I photographed their home back around Thanksgiving and posted on SwittersB) buried next to a different motel and busy intersection off I-205. Alloy rims and pioneers.

BigK Pioneer

Ann Powell, a Pioneer woman, with view of KMart (Big K) and buses that meet in the parking lot to transport seniors to coastal casinos.

Ella Last One SB

The last remaining child, Ella the middle child of twelve, appears to be the last one of the original pioneer’s offspring.

These cemetery outings are interesting indeed. I found the usual minimally marked graves (a number) and the unnamed baby’s grave. All these combine, for some reason, to make me marvel and wonder and take the focus away from the cold East wind blowing across these small parcels of  history.

45 Marker SB

The County, in the old days, buried the unidentified in these now Pioneer cemeteries with a number on the marker. It is nice the number stays uncovered and visible. I wonder beyond a ledger with a plot of where each stone is would lead to any details of where did ’45’ die. I doubt there is little more left of that blink of time on earth.

Baby 1880 Sb I visited the Powell Grove Cem. (est. 1848), Columbia Pioneer Cem. (est. 1877) and the Columbia Cem. (est. 1857)


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