Reflections from the Edge of the Pond
I had decided to take a sabbatical from the blog for the month of July. I needed rest and
recuperation...a break from the daily posting. I had no intention of putting my camera away however.
What I needed was a focus close to home. I found it less than a mile from my house...my own personal Walden Pond. I'd photographed it before, of course, but in a more random way. On the 29th of June I began a systematic photographic study of the pond. I plan to visit a few times each week over the course of next year at different times of day and in different weather.
Little Clemons Pond is a bit smaller than Walden, only 25 acres to Walden's 61 acres, but it has no buildings along its shores...very unusual in this part of Southern Maine. This is because one family owns all the surrounding land. I received permission to walk its shoreline for this series. Of course, they don't "own" the pond, no one can own a body of water in Maine, and I hope to take to a canoe to explore the pond from another viewpoint.
I am no naturalist to be sure but I hope to take a cue from Thoreau and keep a journal of my observations. This is a project that I can envelop myself in on so many levels. I look forward to sharing some of the images I receive with you as I progress through the year. On this first day, it was the reflections that captivated me.
I had been so consumed with my Threshold Pilgrimage for so long that the let down when I returned was more like a crash and burn experience. Now, I felt I had a new, less stressful, focus for my camera work and writing.
I've visited the pond 5 or 6 times since my first visit on the 29th and have amassed dozens of images and pages of journal entries. I am also re-reading Walden and I feel closer to Thoreau, on an emotional level, now than I ever have, even after nearly 40 years of visiting Walden. I can understand his fascination for a place.
A lake is the landscape's most beautiful and expressive feature. It is Earth's eye; looking into which the beholder measures the depth of his own nature. - Henry David Thoreau
Have you ever considered finding your own Walden? Maybe it won't be a pond but for me the concept of 'Walden' represents a place of retreat and contemplation for the seeking soul and it needn't be faraway or hard to get to. Find one if you can and then make a commitment to visit on a regular basis over the course of a year. See what it has to teach you...