Rust, Rot, & Decay
Despite the rather gloomy title, I find a real beauty in these reminders from nature of the transient reality of everything . . . whether created or man made. The chemical oxidation of metal produces rust that is often rich with reds and oranges as in the railing on a footbridge and the extra character added to a mailbox.
The rotting wood from a fallen log was captured in a Georgia swamp. The visible beauty of the rot comes from the rich texture and a rainbow full of colors. The invisible beauty is that in the demise of this tree nutrients are added to the soil and mushrooms and insects are well fed along with nearby trees and vines.
The last two images are more about decay than rust or rot. The first image is a small portion of a large demolition project on a former hotel. This reminder of the “this too shall pass” nature of human craft and construction is also visible in our crumbling infrastructure, yet we still tend to imagine a permanence that isn’t there. The last rose of summer was nipped by a killing frost. This rose will decay, but will be forgotten with the new roses of next summer.
Summer’s Last Rose.
As I age, I am increasingly aware of my body’s own versions of rust, rot, and decay. At the same time I have become aware of the intrinsic internal beauty of aging and have learned to focus on the new roses of summer and not too much on the rust, rot, and decay.