Sunday, September 19, 2010

Mid-Month Challenge: September

Building on our gorgeous month of trees, this mid-month challenge is to use the image of tree in a piece of artwork, craft or writing about your grief and loss. Contributor could use any medium.


Fallen Leaves

They watched us, as we traveled home
that night. Their arms full in bloom,
dancing in the passion of spring
and the promise of gentle rains.

We were not consoled, even then,
by their soft reassuring beauty.

Those same trees watched us tonight,
in their agony echoing ours.
They were great mourners,
bending and sighing for the wind.

They contorted themselves,
doubled in two;
reaching around their starlit world,
trying to hold on to something,
anything, so great was their emptiness.

The Darkness folded around them,
trying to console the leafless trees of autumn,
but instead it drove them deeper
into their depression.

Every now and then,
some break in the throes
of grief.

Tonight we joined them
in the darkness
wailing with the wind
while the mourning comes
and goes again.

Hand in hand,
we twisted against
the wicked force
but never breaking

An Unwanted Path.

about this piece.
I wrote this after my second miscarriage, which I lost in the spring but had been due in the Autumn. When we lost it, the trees were beautiful and alive- and as time passed and we approached the estimated due date, the trees were much like we were. I remember watching them dance with the wind when they were full of life, and then shake with it's force after. It touched a cord within me. -slh


Family Tree.
Polymer Clay. 
Patches of Puddles. (family blog, not specifically loss)

about the piece.

This piece of work was inspired by my family and the loss of our son, Freddie, in April 2010. Freddie is my fifth child and my first son. He died when he was 11 days old after failing to breathe in the minutes after his birth, despite an easy, trouble free labour. The picture is our family tree; the grass below is divided into 5 pieces, our five children who make the family what it is. The roots of the tree are growing through rocks, the foundations of our marriage and the things which make us what we are and the boulders on each side are us. The sky has two large stars and five small ones - all of us together, four daughters and one son and the sparkles are for what might have been and what might yet come. --Merry


All Good Things In Your Name.
Glutton Button.

about this piece.
This image is of Eva's tree, which is meant to bloom during the time of year when she was alive. Her tree blooms very briefly and while I wish it wasn't so, it is and always will be. -Audrey


The Grief Tree.
Michelle Swords.
Expressive Artwork.
My World.


Amy McCarter.
Maker, pen and colored pencil.
Surviving the Day Every Day

about this piece.
Sometimes it seems grief is too heavy for even the strongest tree to hold without breaking. While sitting alone upon this branch, opening her heart to the possibilities that await ahead, the branch breaks from the weight of the emotional load carried inside herself. She may fall.... she may not. Such are the possibilities... --Amy


Next Sunday is the Ten Questions Blog Round-up and any reader is invited to join in. I will put up a Mister Linky at midnight on this blog. Contributors are invited to answer any or all of these Ten Questions about this month's theme and themselves. This is a way for readers of the still life 365 community to find other readers.And don't forget to check out other people and then leave a comment. Comments mean so much to everyone.

1. When you saw the theme of trees for the month of September, what immediately came to your mind?
2. What kinds of words do you associate with trees?
3. Of these words, do you associate any with yourself?
4. Have you been an outdoorsy person throughout your life?
5. How has your relationship with nature changed since your loss(es)?
6. Did you plant a tree or bush in honor of your child?
7. If you have planted a tree for your child, in what ways do you incorporate the tree into your life? If you haven't, what natural images do you associate with your loss? (Do you tend to it? Do you meditate or reflect under it? Do you places flowers by it?)
8. Trees have also been used to represent families. Talk a bit about your own family tree.
9. What are your feelings now about family trees and exploring your own lineage?
10. The rings of trees fascinate me. I remember learning that in hard years, the rings were smaller, or darker than in years of good water. Describe the rings of your tree.


  1. Another wonderful post - each moving and poignant!

  2. WOW a wonderful array of art. I adore that grief and love and life intermingle its like all of us, we have lost, yet we live, We are all like that family tree. A family tree of bereaved

  3. Each piece has such meaning, and beauty. Absolutely lovely.

  4. Lovely assortment, each one is so powerful.

  5. Thank you so much for this blog, and your beautiful poem. Our first child mis-carried at 5 weeks, on Christmas Eve. I grieved, but by the following year the grief had subsided...until I went to a church Christmas party where there were two pregnant mothers, and it welled up again. A friend had driven me, so I couldn't just go home...I spent half of time time pushing down the tears and the other half in the bathroom when I couldn't hold it in....and when we finally left she asked what was wrong and after telling her cried all the way home.


What do you think?