30 August 2012

The new Archaeopteryx

Walking along a rough and broken concrete footpath beside the lake at Bariloche, I glanced down. At my feet, a foot. What had happened here — what had befallen the bird? What series of coincidences had left this limb precisely here, framed in this way? I couldn't help thinking of Archaeopteryx, perhaps the most famous of all fossils.

I walked on, still wondering. In the following days, ash from the volcano swept over the town, leaving a fine, powdery film over everything, perhaps even over the foot on the footpath. In another time, the foot might have turned to a fossil; this time, this relic would vanish into oblivion. But perhaps, for who knows how long, this photograph will remain as another kind of record, a statement of questions more than answers, an incitement to wonder. A new kind of fossil.

[7 November 2011, Panasonic Lumix GH1, 14– 45 mm at 45 mm, ISO 200, 1/160 at f8]

All content © 2012 Pete McGregor


Relatively Retiring said...

The ruins of the moment indeed.

Zhoen said...

Love and avian remains.

pohanginapete said...

RR, yes, exactly.

Zhoen, I'm reminded of Philip Larkin's An Arundel Tomb