“There is something sacred about stillness. The world has not changed, outside our bounds, we just realize peace and tranquility are possible, if we make space for it.”
– Ed Lehming

This is what I’m often faced with, as I take time to hike the local forests. It’s not a grand vista or a festival filled with brightly dressed people. The forest, in its simplest form, even at its gloomiest, still has pockets of beauty to share.

Here, bright orange beech leaves and the occasional stray oak leaf brightened the path in contrast to the dark December trees. Gentle snow drifted between the boughs and all the world was silent as I stood still on the trail, simply enjoying the peacefulness of the moment, my visible breath rising through the air around my face.

I love these times, where my senses are filled with the life of the forest. It’s what draws me here. You see, even in apparent stillness and calm, life in the forest goes on. Soon, small birds flit between branches, seeking seeds, squirrels scamper out of sight and into the high branches, and the very trees crackle as the temperature dips, yet the sense of stillness rarely departs. The other sound that fills my ears is the crunch of the snow beneath my feet, seeming so loud in this quiet retreat.

Though summer hikes have their appeal, I think I prefer the stillness and bright purity of winter, especially after a fresh snow, when the whole first seems to be inhaling deeply during its long rest.

Nikon D800
Tamron SP 70-200mm f/2.8 Di VC USD @ 95 mm
1/60 sec, f/5.6, ISO 400

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4 Comments on ““Stillness”

  1. I love your descriptions – you made me feel as if I was standing there too. Like you, I feel that there is something sacred in the stillness and peace of nature.

  2. Ed
    I hope you’ll pardon my recent absence. I am overwhelmed by your breathtaking images of Iceland, and I am trying to absorb and consume these without an excess number of stereotyped superlatives in comments.
    I had to drop a line today, though, as this simple and straightforward post parallels my own reverence for these silent vistas, these moments alone in nature’s lap.
    It is here that I, too, feel closest to our world, and in a way, myself.
    I won’t see you out there, nor anyone else besides my canine companion.
    Yet our spirits are kindred.


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