This tree to me looks a little sinister as if it could reach out and grab you. Maybe it was due to the dark shadows surrounding it. The grey sky and undergrowth lacking in colour add to the perception of menace.
It is easy to see where writers of fantasy books can get their inspiration from. Walking in rural Scotland can’t fail to release some sort of spiritual feeling held within. Those who think they have nothing creative in their makeup often admit to being moved after a walk in the hills, glens, or woods, taken by surprise that nature can affect them so.
Unfortunately, I don’t write fantasy or sinister books of any kind. I am sure this tree would have triggered something or at least made its way into a story of that genre. Mine are more about love between friends, family and community. Acceptance and humour are laced around the theme of female friendships. The stories leave readers I hope, feeling uplifted and joyous. There is no way I could work this creepy tree into a Blàs story, or could I?
I will wait to see if it plays on my mind and slips into a plot somewhere in a new book. At the moment though I have to concentrate on Blàs two. It still has to be proofread and any nice quotes placed on the cover.
Blàs Roots in the Soil, ironically, is giving me itchy feet, considering it is about belonging, mostly. Perhaps it is more to do with the timing as we can now move about again more freely. I long to go north and up into Sutherland. The wide beaches are calling.
Not that I will be walking them in warm weather. Nope, I leave that to the tourists. Beach walking is mainly an exercise done in cold windy weather where only brave dog walkers and young families can be spotted. Everyone will be well wrapped up for the May weather that Scotland can throw at us.
I have noticed that despite not using any photographs of trees till April I am managing to increase their use considerably now. I even debated with myself if I should have used the picture above or another tree that appears to have a face on it. It is no surprise then that trees play such a big part in my next book. I should be more amazed that they haven’t taken up much room in my Blàs or Grumpa books before.
You can look forward then to more photos of trees to come in the next few months. The sought-for faces often found on the bark will however be lost under a veil of lime green leaves. I might manage one more supposed face before then if I am lucky.
However, I am expecting some chocolates to make it to the blog before then. I have already had one great-tasting season and await one more. The camera and taste buds are at the ready awaiting any little tweaks Highland Thistle Chocolates have made.
I’ve been studying the tree since I started writing. Perhaps I have got it all wrong. Looking at the base it is obviously not well. Large bits of bark lie scattered around its trunk. The lack of branches and needles above proof it is not in the healthiest of states. Have I condemned this plant by first appearances then, just because it doesn’t look like the rest? I have pre-judged this poor ill tree at my first glance? It is not after all stretching out to grab any unsuspecting walkers who stride past it.
One of the great things about trees, even when they are dead or dying, is that they still teem with nature. They nurture insects, give shelter and feed others as they slowly decay back down into the soil.
This is not then a picture of darkness and malevolence or something sad and rotten. It is rather an entity teeming with life, something needed so other beings can exist. It is something wonderful and strong, helping to cultivate the very woods it lives in. This tree, in this stage, is maintaining the balance so needed in nature. It may not be in the expected way we humans regard these things but it is a welcome home and source of food for some. Even that creative streak that lives in all of us.
Happy tree hunting.