Posted by: kerryl29 | March 28, 2023

The Story Behind the Image: Heart of Nature

When I was in New England during the fall a few years ago, on the very first day I arrived in northwest Maine, I made a quick foray to Coos Canyon before the sun set that day. The canyon is right off the side of the road, a public wayside of sorts, where the Swift River flows. It’s not a very deep canyon and is easily accessible.

It had been a relatively dry summer and early fall in New England, so the river wasn’t particularly high. As a result, many of the rocky canyon’s potholes were exposed as such. It was still before peak color set in in northern New England, but enough early turning trees had dropped leaves that, along with pine needles from the considerable number of coniferous trees nearby, debris was collected in the water pockets, forming interesting intimate subjects.

I wandered around the rock slabs, on both sides of the Swift River, with no particular subject in mind; I was just looking for something that would catch my eye. And then I spotted the heart. One of the potholes was unmistakably formed in the shape of a heart, filled with water, colorful fallen leaves and the ubiquitous pine needles.

This visit was just weeks after the sudden passing of my friend Craig Steffen,; he was (and remains) frequently on my mind, and the very first thing that popped into my head when I saw the heart was the union of Craig and his wife. Whenever I view this image, that bittersweet memory is rekindled. There’s always a tiny bit of pain associated with this experience, but of one thing I am certain: it beats forgetting.

Coos Canyon Intimate, Oxford County, Maine


  1. Nice colours!

  2. So pretty!

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