Off we trudged into the old, gnarly graveyard. Sky was clear, weather was cold. This particular area was easy to walk through, but just ahead we could see hillocks of invasive mile-a-minute weeds engulfing monuments, headstones, and everything else in its path. Looked like a lunar landscape of dead farmland, or something. The cemetery is preserved, but not in a way that it was intended. Trees, growing at odd angles, their crooked branches strangled by vines, are so huge that they dwarf and enshroud thirty-foot tall obelisks. You wonder if old cemetery trees look as they do partly because of the arsenic and other nasty embalming chemicals in the soil.
Unfortunately, the backhoes were now digging right there! Second best, I would attempt to climb the tree where we had come in, and hop the fence at that point. I managed to get to the top of the barbed-wire fence by pulling myself up the tree like freaking George of the Jungle when – a pickup truck zoomed into view! I did not want anyone to see me, though I wasn’t at all sure they would even care, so I loosened my gloved grip and the vines gave way! The only thing that broke my six-foot fall were all the dry-rotted tree branches lying on the ground. They say our physical senses reflect our current belief system. If that is indeed the case, I believe I just fell out of a tree. But they also say that the responsibility for our pain is our own.
Creating abandoned site photographs is exhilarating. The danger is evident in every picture. This is probably why I enjoy similar work by others – I know how difficult it is to gain access to these places. I appreciate others’ work, when it is something that I myself may be too scared to attempt.
Please click here to read part one of this story:
A New Year - A New Abandoned Cemetery