Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Willow Knot

I went for a special effect on this image of a knot on a willow enclosure at Airfield Gardens, South Dublin. Somehow, stained glass seemed to suit the structure and the colour of the twine that was used to secure it. Despite the weeping willow's connection with death, willow has a sacred and protective character. Moses was said to have been found floating on the Nile in a willow basket and Diana too was found in a willow clump. I think this is a goat willow, sometimes known as a pussy willow. It may have been bred with another type of because unlike other willows, Salix Caprea doesn't readily root and grow after being cut. One of the enclosures was made from a male willow because it had catkins - which I used to love as a child. The willow is a very shapely, graceful tree and sometimes a woman's body can be called "willowy". The knotwork in the image is another matter. Often depicted in Celtic art, it is really an ouroboros, twining its way around the willow. It does look a bit like a snake doesn't it? I like to think it depicts something of the perpetual nature of the cosmos.