persuaded to live with trees

5.14.20 ~ The Merritt Family Forest, Groton, Connecticut
a colonial stone slab bridge crosses Eccleston Brook
This property was acquired by the Groton Open Space Association
in May of 2008
5.14.20 ~ robin in the Merritt Family Forest
I loved the way this tree was growing on a flat stone “stage”

The tempered light of the woods is like a perpetual morning, and is stimulating and heroic. The anciently reported spells of these places creep on us. The stems of pines, hemlocks, and oaks, almost gleam like iron on the excited eye. The incommunicable trees begin to persuade us to live with them, and quit our life of solemn trifles. Here no history, or church, or state, is interpolated on the divine sky and the immortal year. How easily we might walk onward into opening the landscape, absorbed by new pictures, and by thoughts fast succeeding each other, until by degrees the recollection of home was crowded out of the mind, all memory obliterated by the tyranny of the present, and we were led in triumph by nature.
~ Ralph Waldo Emerson
(The Essays of Ralph Waldo Emerson)

living with trees

The Merritt Family Forest is part of a large block of forested open space. The upper portion includes a steep, rocky, wooded upland with a mature hardwood forest. Descendants claim the forest remained uncut since the family acquired the property in 1848. The lower portion includes a meadow, and hosts a Tier 1 vernal pool and two Class A streams – Eccleston Brook and an intermittent tributary. Eccleston Brook flows into Palmer Cove, Fisher’s Island Sound and Long Island Sound.
~ Groton Open Space Association website

glacial erratic
5.14.20 ~ Jack-in-the-pulpit, side view
5.14.20 ~ Jack-in-the-pulpit, front view

I had an especially good time enjoying the paths through the trees on that lovely, warm spring day. And I had an enjoyable afternoon creating this post today, a month later. A pleasant memory to savor. It’s been rough the past few weeks, battling the poison ivy. Tomorrow will be my last dose of prednisone and it will be nice to say goodbye to its side-effects, for me, anxiety and a headache. It’s no fun being up half the night with a panic attack! I’m ready to start living again. 🙂

14 thoughts on “persuaded to live with trees”

  1. You have found so many new and lovely places to walk! Good camera work yet again. Thank you for sharing!

    1. Thank you, Janet! I’m looking forward to the day, post-pandemic, when you and I can explore these places together, too!

  2. Oh poison ivy is awful! Just hearing those words is causing my shoulder to hurt. Thank you for a lovely walk through your lovely trees.

    1. Isn’t it, though? And the “cure” was almost as bad as the poison ivy. Now I’m trying to muster up the courage to continue our walks in the woods…

  3. I didn’t know about your battle with poison ivy, but am pleased to read that you’re on the downside of that situation. I love your photos, especially the one of the moss. It looks perfect and that shade of green is soothing to me. Happy Weekend.

    1. Thanks, Ally. Hopefully I have three weeks of misery behind me now. I’m pretty sure that is pincushion moss, which I’ve only started noticing in the woods. (It may have been there all along but it’s new to me.) Happy Midsummer Weekend to you, too!

    1. Yes, indeed they do! I’m going to have to go back and visit that “stage” and see what new performances the trees might be rehearsing. 🙂

  4. A delightful walk through the woods with you, Barbara. The Merritt Family Forest looks so lovely, and your photos of the trees, boulders, moss and foliage were wonderful. We don’t have jack-in-the-pulpit in the western U.S., and I have forgotten about this lovely plant, and was happy to see your photos of this beautiful specimen. Hope the poison ivy is soon gone, it is maddening. Many thanks, Barbara.

    1. Thank you, Jet! I was surprised to learn that the jack-in-the-pulpit perennial can live for 25+ years and that its leaves and fruits contain calcium oxalate, a skin irritant. Won’t be touching them any more, although it was a temptation to lift the hood and admire the pretty stripes inside. My mother’s voice keeps coming back to me, “Look, but don’t touch!”

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