A New Subject
“Living beings are referred to as subjects, never as objects, and personhood is extended to all who breathe and some who don’t. I greet the silent boulder people with the same respect as I do the talkative chickadees.” — Robin Wall Kimmerer
The focus of an image is referred to as the subject. Subjects are usually people. However, the subject does not always have to be human. The ancient trees should be granted the same respect that people receive. Nature commands our focus. In this image, an ancient cedar tree captivates the same attention a human would. It has limbs holding a delicate bouquet of baby’s breath as if it is a person posing for a portrait. The soft sunbeams encompass the tree with a soft hug as if the sun just can’t help but be near. The gentle soul of this elegant cedar is brought forth when it claims its title as the subject.
How may we listen to the living world with our whole selves?
Wrap your arms around a tree, let it feel your pulse.
May your hearts beat in unison.
Let the water flow through your fingers, feel the way it glides.
May you move as it moves.
Have the wind blow through your arms, listen to it breathe.
May you follow its breaths. Bask in the sun, feel its warmth.
May you be inspired by its light.
May you one day treat nature as you would a person.
We must learn to respect nature as it deserves. Hug the trees. Feel the water. Hear the wind. Stand in the light. Instead of just receiving the gifts nature offers. We must learn to give back.