Welcome to another edition of Photo Friday! If you’ve been following along this week, I’ve brought you photos from a tour Sweet Husband and I took of the Old Biloxi Cemetery for my monthly 10 on 10 and Wordless Wednesday posts. For this week’s Photo Friday, I thought I would finish out the week in the same place…in black and white. Because it’s a cemetery and why not?
I can’t tell you exactly where in the cemetery this gate is located – it’s nearer to the back and perhaps in the middle? But the cemetery is a bit of a rabbit warren. You enter in the back and think that that it’s just a little bit of space, but when you start moving around, you find another corner over here and just when you think it’s done, down this little slope there is another section. The remains of this gate are towards the back and perhaps in the middle? I was drawn to it because off to the side, the other support post is there on the ground. It has Masonic markings on it but the fence that went with it is long gone.
Near the lone gate, there is a tomb that is in extreme disrepair. These bricks are part of the facade that have fallen off the side. In the front, the marble slab with the engravings is in pieces on the ground. The bottom of the tomb is boarded up with plywood; the top has broken pieces of a blank marble slab. It would appear that this tomb belongs to a family that either no longer has the means to provide for the upkeep or there is no one left.
I think that is perhaps one of the saddest things about cemeteries – which I don’t find to be particularly sad places – is the fact that we all move on. While we build monuments to our lost loved ones, eventually we ourselves are lost and those monuments because interesting archaeological sites for people like me who wander through and wonder about the lives of the dead – who they mattered to, who mattered to them, what they did with their brief moments in the sun.
One of the other things that strikes me about these older cemeteries is that they were designed to be places that those left behind would want to spend time. Many of these plots had benches, where you could sit and commune with your loved ones. With trees and flowering bushes – and in this particular cemeteries, awnings or structures that covered plots, providing shelter from the elements – this older cemetery, as is typical of many older final resting places, was thoughtfully constructed and curated to provide a place of repose. More modern cemeteries lack not only the character of their predecessors, they are designed for ease of maintenance. With cemeteries banning the planting of flowers/flowering shrubs and requiring only flat, even with he ground headstones, the shift has been made to ease of maintenance rather than creating an inviting place to pause and remember.
I suppose that is to be expected – as a society, we have become very disconnected from death. Whereas we used to keep our departed with us at home for viewings or wakes or even funerals and families washed the bodies of their loved ones and sat with them through the night to ensure their passage into the next world, things are more sterile and clinical today. We have no problem watching gratuitous violence and senseless murder on our screens but we cannot seem to handle the reality of death when it is up close and personal.
I’m fairly certain that those hands are a repair. I don’t think that there is any way that a statue with the delicateness of the wings and face of this cherub could possibly have sausage fingers…and apparently only 3 or 4 of them.
Have I told you about resurrection fern before? I think about the south and our live oaks, immediately after I think about spanish moss, I think the resurrection fern, which can lose up to 97% of its water content, shrivel up and turn brown, for all intents and purposes appearing to be absolutely and completely dead but immediately turn a beautiful lush and full green as soon as the rain starts to fall or the humidity begins to rise. It is a marvel to me. And can I just point out the detail on those leaves? AMAZING.
It doesn’t just occur on the live oaks, though. Anywhere they can get a foothold, they will…even on a tomb.
Then, of course, there is the Spanish Moss. There is something haunting but beautiful about it as it drips down from the trees. Sweet Husband asked me how we go about getting Spanish Moss to take to our oak trees, particularly the one in the back. Unfortunately, I don’t know what to tell hi about that.
I’m pretty sure that over the next couple of days I will re-edit these photos using color settings…particularly the ferns and the light coming through the Spanish Moss. You’ll want to make sure that you are ready for it 😉
Photo Friday Link-Up
Welcome to another edition of the Photo Friday link-up! Last week we had our most views and clicks ever, which means that y’all are doing an incredible job of supporting each other…and that is what makes this one of the best link-ups on the web. This community is incredible! You provide endless inspiration AND support. Thank you!
Last week we had a three-way tie for the most viewed link! Congratulations to Tara of Back Road Ramblers, Lowanda of Sunshine and Elephants, and Kelly of Swimming in Sunshine! Each of them shared some amazing photos with us last week!
Our last added link came from Kathy at You’ll Shoot Your Eye Out. If you missed her post, go check it out now! It’s always good stuff!
I can’t wait to see what you have for us this week!