To the folks at Orion,

Pretty nature images are a penny a dozen, and sometimes I loathe myself for taking them and feeling a semblance of pride. But once in a while you take one that just makes you feel a thing, and despite what you're told to do online, you submit it anyway. The "these are not rules" line in your online guidelines leaves me just an ounce of hope, so here we are.

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This scene can be found on the Navajo Loop in Bryce Canyon National Park, just oozing 60 million years of defiance, likely even when no one is looking. We're all acutely aware as of late that that's what Mother Nature does — my Midwestern town is flooding, Washington is covered in smoke, Ethiopia is ravaged by drought — but in moments, her defiance can be more zen-like than catastrophic. These gentler moments seem more rarely celebrated, in a world that is hell-bent on going up in (at least the heat of) flames.

All that is why I wanted to submit this photo to Orion. Even if you have no use for a single image that virtually is a "hole in a tree that symbolizes the emptiness of humanity," I appreciate you taking the time to go down this two-minute hole with me.


Jacqueline Kehoe