Silent Sunday – April 3, 2016


The ghost of John Muir worn into the trunk of The Fallen Monarch, a Giant Sequoia tree that fell before the arrival of white settlers in California. The hollow trunk was subsequently used as a hotel, saloon, stable and is now a pedestrian tunnel in Sequoia National Monument. Below is a picture of John Muir for comparison! Have a wonderful and enjoyable Sunday.
Screen Shot 2016-04-03 at 7.37.23 AM


    1. Thank you, Lillian! I completely agree – this tree has given so much to humans, from the practical to the spiritual, and it keeps on giving. It endures even though the tree is long deceased. The wood is still warm and comforting.


    1. Thank you, Jeni! Your recent posts and photographs of trees are gorgeous! Do you happen to know what species of tree they are? I often think the bark and trunks of trees have a spirit even after the tree has died and/or fallen.


      1. I think you’re right about the spirit of the trees, Marcy. Certainly in the esoteric world it makes sense but also there is evidence that trees are connected through the soil organisms and send chemical messages to each other. I imagine the standing trunks must be part of that. And all the creatures connect together. I’ll look at my photos and comment on the posts as there are a few different species.


  1. It does look like him, and how appropriate given its location! He’s my favorite nature writer, and features in one of my poems.


    1. I know! If John Muir’s spirit is anywhere, it would be in the Sierra Nevadas. I looked carefully at this area of the stump and I didn’t see any human attempts to shape it or carving around the face (sadly, people often vandalize the fallen stumps). I do believe this is a natural weathering of the wood. Which poem of yours features Muir? I’d love to read it (or read it again!) – please post the link!


      1. You had me hooked with the title! I love that you modeled it after Ginsberg’s poem addressing Whitman for the Whitman poem exercise – a touch subversive and Ginsberg and Whitman would have liked that! 🙂 And your Ginsberg inspiration is well timed – I’ve had Allen Ginsberg on my mind since I did an illustration for Ginsberg Week over at Beat Company.


    1. You are so welcome! Photographs can’t do these majestic trees justice (at least not my humble iPhone attempts) – but I thought this small patch of wood came close to capturing the spirit of the place.


    1. Thanks! I started out wanting to capture exactly that – the beautiful texture and patterns. It was only after I looked at my photos that I saw John Muir’s face (well, I had him on my mind after a visit to the Sequoia visitor center!) – I called my family over for a vote and they all agreed that they saw the face, although not everyone agreed it looked like Muir! 🙂

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