Most of us, during childhood (usually on one of those long car trips, foreheads pressed against the cool glass) have played the cloud game: searching the billowy skies for recognizable shapes. Discovering objects sometimes hilarious. Sometimes a stretch. Sometimes creepy.
A few weeks ago when I took a hike with my friend Kathy, clouds weren’t the carriers of these hidden images. Over and over, I saw things ‘not really there’ among cactus spines and rotted plant carcasses. And in the spirit of Halloween, I thought I’d share a few.
Do you see what I see below?
Tell me I'm not the only one who sees a face and an "o" shaped mouth on this crested saguaro arm to the right. Click to enlarge.
I've never before seen saguaro skeletons with these tendrils hanging from them. With the dark clouds in the background, I saw Medusa-like snake curls hanging from this dead saguaro. Click to enlarge.
Look closely. Do you see the "orbs" covering this saguaro? (Okay - so I've watched too many ghost-hunting shows). While I know this is nothing more than the sun glinting off my dirty camera lens, I started wondering about ghosts when I downloaded this shot. Click to enlarge.
Yes, we're back to the coveted crested saguaro I've named Bertha. And this may be the creepiest thing I saw. Look at the 'arm' on the right (foreground). Do you see the chin pushed out, the pug-like nose, the ridges of the brow on top, the eye sockets? Do you also see the alien-shaped head and eyes on the arm in the back (left)? Click to enlarge.
I took a half-dozen shots of this crooked cactus, and each time, that wispy, ethereal halo formed about the top of the cactus. Spoooky. Click to enlarge.
For Readers & Writers: The cactus isn’t usually a symbol of fear in the literary world. But many objects, critters and settings are. What images symbolize fear in the novels you read? In your own novels? Are they the standard symbols – ravens and spiders – or something altogether unique?