Saturday, January 9, 2010

the inheritors





Not to beleaguer a point or anything but DAMN, it’s cold.  So as I sit here pondering my imminent encasement in ice, I thought I would do up a post on our likely successors.





Some of you may recall that I made claim to collecting dead insects.  


OK, are we through with the icks and shudders?






Try to look at them with a distanced eye.  They are so interestingly, delicately shaped; so beautifully, iridescently colored;





so wonderfully, wondrously different.  The inheritors of the earth.  Or so we imagine after we have scorched the planet in our headlong pursuit of extinction.






My small collection of insect carcasses is constantly changing.  Their delicate little bodies only last so long.





They get dull and start turning to dust and get eaten by things we can’t see.  As one crumbles into dust and is discarded another is found and replaces it.  My little peeps are on the lookout for me.





They are kept in boxes or placed on altars like relics.





Without them we would have no flowers, no fruit.  Without them the detritus of life would not be recycled into the stuff of life.


40 comments:

  1. I always plant marigolds in a ring around my vegetable garden to attract bees for pollination. It works, too, I always get amazing crops, especially of tomatoes!

    ReplyDelete
  2. Your collection and explanation are fascinating...as are you!

    ReplyDelete
  3. Wow! I love your bug collection. Got to love camera macro settings to lift beautiful details to the surface.

    ReplyDelete
  4. I guess you love bugs, or you don't.as long as they don't have long hairy legs I'll not run away screaming.

    Came over to say thank you for your comment on my last post and to tell you that, yes, was out of bed the first day, in hospital and have been up every day since. But bathing has been out of the question because of the high sides of the bath and my inability to stand on one leg...until today.
    Coming up to the sixth week when most forbidden things are ok.

    ReplyDelete
  5. We're all just one breath away from crumbling into dust, aren't we.

    Shit.

    ReplyDelete
  6. I am not a big fan of bugs, but I think it's cool that you are. The gold moth was pretty nice looking.

    I believe bacteria and viruses are the true inheritors of the earth, after our kind.

    Unlike you I don't hold it against us that as a species we've been so successful. Just like many species before (and after) us, we have risen and now we shall fall. It's the rhythm of life on this planet; I don't see how we could be any different, how we could rise above the physics of our planet. Do you??

    Stay warm!!

    ReplyDelete
  7. Oh, I don't hold it against us Reya. I just recognize that in our success we sow the seeds of our own destruction. This is what we are and different life will bloom after we are gone.

    ReplyDelete
  8. I love butterflys ... or flutterbyes .. as I call them. I watch them in the Spring / Summer fly around my back yard.

    Honeybees also interest me .. from a far ... of course.

    (interesting that you collect them)

    ReplyDelete
  9. Like you I am fascinated by insects and fully realize that we need them. I am always deadheading and sticking my hands in among the bees and had never been stung until last season! I will be more careful!

    ReplyDelete
  10. What a beautiful collection, Ellen! ooh, makes me feel a lot better about my own tiny, but ever expanding collection of dead, found insects!

    Last summer, I discovered a beautiful bee (deceased, of course) in (library school) class: half my classmates declared me crazy, the other half nearly ran off screaming...

    So I didn't tell them about also collecting pretty bones, pods and even my cats' whiskers for future glass or jewelry projects and inspiration... ;-)

    ReplyDelete
  11. ellen both my kids and i have little collections of dead insects that we find by the roadway. they are gorgeous and eventually fall apart but their colouring and form is amazing!!! they will be here after we've moved on no doubt. they've figured out enough of this place to be able to survive almost anything. have a lovely day and i'll wish you some warmth!!!! steven

    ReplyDelete
  12. Ok, Ellen. I did not know this about you. Now I'm wondering. But I'm really happy you asked Steven about serenity. I loved his response.

    ReplyDelete
  13. I see the beauty and know the allure. I have even been known to hot glue carcasses into a wreath, here and there as a surprise.

    ReplyDelete
  14. I love the end - these critters are necessary for life, whether we like it or not, & they can actually be quite beautiful.

    ReplyDelete
  15. I could not agree more. Insects are amazing works of intricate detail.

    ReplyDelete
  16. Now that's an interesting hobby. I didn't realize you collected these little guys. Nice collection!

    ReplyDelete
  17. You have an interesting and rich collection. Your observation about the role of insects is very important for us to keep in mind, as we cut forests and destroy habitats without thinking.

    ReplyDelete
  18. your collection looks fascinating...but not sure I could have them in my house.

    ReplyDelete
  19. So beautiful, your post, and the cycle of life. Something is always on the move, as John Travolta said in "Phenomenon" which we watched last night.

    ReplyDelete
  20. Love it, Ellen. They are sacred and you can see that. Very soulful. Thanks for sharing.

    ReplyDelete
  21. I'm sure those gorgeous, (and they are gorgeous), creatures provide much inspiration for your amazing art. I once found the strangest bug on my front porch, it was about 3 & 1/2 inches long, and I put him inside a hurricane lamp and set him on my mantel. My ex-sister-in-law made fun of me behind my back, she had no imagination or appreciation for anything that didn't come from a department store. Thanks for sharing, fascinating post. Loved the pictures.

    ReplyDelete
  22. A fascinating post here, Ellen. I'm not at all put off by your beautiful exhibits. They are intriguing, especially the way they glow for a time then disintegrate. They remind me of the transience of life.

    I'm new to your blog. I traveled here from Kass's wonderful k no longer silent blog . It's good to meet you and I shall visit again.

    ReplyDelete
  23. LOVE bugs- all sorts - you are woman after my heart! I keep them as well but lately discovered that my collection was full of maggots- they had to go...
    We, up here in the north , are having your usual weather! So warm all of a sudden!

    ReplyDelete
  24. Wandered over from Linda Sue's blog. Your insect collection is wonderous. They are amazing creatures. I taught a 4-H entimology class for the neighborhood quite a while ago. Still have a couple of their display boxes full of specimins. Our low humidity is kind to the dead. Too bad it doesn't keep wrinkles away.

    ReplyDelete
  25. I love bugs. I have several found (dead) ones and I honor them. I agree with Bonnie. You are fascinating. I read through several of your posts and sympathize with your struggles and take joy in your artistic expressions.

    ReplyDelete
  26. Oh yes! They are amazing and quite a work of art in themselves.

    ReplyDelete
  27. Before I come round for dinner could you promise me that you keep your insect collection well away from the kitchen?

    ReplyDelete
  28. At one time, had I read this, I'd have been scratching my head about collecting dead bugs. Not any more. Prompted by Frank, I have quite an extensive collection of feathers which I pick up regularly upon finding them. There's no real difference between my feathers and your beautiful insects.

    ReplyDelete
  29. Um, I'm not sure that I can get past the icky stage. The photos give me the heebie jeebies. But great post (read with eyes mostly closed though)

    ReplyDelete
  30. Ellen,just gorgeous,really!

    The teacher I aid for has a butterfly collection. Each one is so precious. Tiny works of art.

    I love the bees!

    Peace ~ Rene

    ReplyDelete
  31. Guess what girlfriend.... this amazing piece was recognized by Hilary at The Smitten Image in her Post Of The Week!!

    You know, I had a feeling it might...

    Congratulations. So well deserved!

    ReplyDelete
  32. What a fabulous collection. They are so wondrously made!! I just popped over from Hilary's blog to catch yours, I am having a nice visit. Thanks
    Hugs
    SueAnn

    ReplyDelete
  33. no icks or shudders from me
    I find insects to be beautiful and fascinating

    like visitors from another world that peek in to show us a bit and then flit away

    congrats on POTW

    ReplyDelete
  34. It's a very intricate ecosystem that surrounds us, and all things do a play a part.

    I can't say that I quite see the value in collecting the dead bugs, but then again, it doesn't matter if I do, or don't. What matters is that you do.

    ReplyDelete
  35. No trouble here seeing the beauty in your insects. I like that you have some of them "posed", as it were, rather than pinned to cotton. Your words reminded me of one of my favorite quotations:

    The planet is not in jeopardy. We are in jeopardy. We don't have the power to destroy the planet or to save it, but we might have the power to save ourselves.

    - Michael Crichton Jurassic Park

    Congratulations on the POTW

    ReplyDelete
  36. Congrats on POTW mention from Hilary

    ReplyDelete
  37. Doubt if we could live without bugs doing all their valuable work for the planet while humanity strives to do the opposite.

    Great post and congratulations on POTD ~ Eddie

    ReplyDelete
  38. I absolutely see the beautiful in your collection.

    I was just telling my husband the other day how beautiful I think spiders are...particularly tarantulas.

    They're nothing short of amazing.

    )O(
    boo

    ReplyDelete
  39. No shudders from me, but...I thank you for not including any spiders; otherwise, I would be writing this from the comfort of a hospital room, following my heart attack.
    Congrats on POTW!

    ReplyDelete
  40. Stopping by from Hilary's. Cool shots of the insects. I'm kind of the opposite. I love photographing the little critters, but for some odd reason, I don't like to take pictures of dead insects. Perhaps it's too depressing for me. I too often feel that they will be next in line to run the earth. And we sure wouldn't have any flowers without them. I wish more people understood that.

    ReplyDelete

I opened my big mouth, now it's your turn.