In the distance I can see Table Rock Mountain and Hawksbill, creating a horizon of intrigue as I sit just outside the circle of shade provided by a Table Mountain Pine on the rocky slopes of the Blue Ridge.
The sun is hot but I want to include this Pine, it has such personality and presence, and if I sit any closer to it, the view I want to capture is thrown off. So I sweat it out.
Here are the things I couldn’t capture in this scene: the pinecones, rimmed with stout, hooked spines, abundant and clinging to the undersides of the branches; the needles, short and thick, radiating out in round bursts of bristles; the crown of branches, so dense and dark it created a visual maze.
It is a captivating tree, the Table Mountain Pine, a cliff-dweller and guardian of these places, armed with bristles and spurs and commanding attention. It certainly had mine.