Textures intrigue me, particularly those found in nature. They enthrall me with their mysterious crevices, their clever nooks and crannies, their minute hiding places for all things unabashedly alive--hidden yet at just the right angle, wide open and visible.
We took a short trip a few weeks back. It was on this trip that the textured bark (documented in the image below) caught my eye, beckoned my camera towards it to capture its depth. It's difficult to tell in this photo, but my camera focused on the framed opening of its rather large crevice: a vast arboreal gateway.
Not quite a squirrel's nest, and not exactly an inconspicuous hiding place, this particular tree's crevice was large enough to stick my arm into. It is a safe haven, but only for those playing an easy game of hide-and-seek. By those, I mean squirrels and chipmunks and insects, alike. Humans are excluded, for the tree's framed opening is delicate, seemingly ready to fall at any inopportune moment. Excitement plays no part in the maintenance of this textured hideaway. Instead, this spot is an arm's length of tranquility, as it is a few dozen footsteps away from a lake's edge at the base of a dark, jagged peak whose views from above inspire an electrified air of fear and awe.
Yet this arboreal gateway, this microcosm of tree life, was what captured my attention in the moment. Neither the bone-chilling wind nor the moody rippling water that skimmed the lake's otherwise taut surface could break my trance-like attention span. I imagined a microscopic town beyond that entryway of brittle tree bark: a hospitable land chock full of life-giving organisms making their way, around nooks and crannies, through life.