Friday, January 05, 2007

Photo Hunter: Memory

The unrecorded past is none other than our old friend, the tree in the primeval forest which fell without being heard. Barbara Tuchman

We only labor to stuff the memory, and leave the conscience and the understanding unfurnished and void. Michel de Montaigne

I tell you the past is a bucket of ashes, so live not in your yesterdays, no just for tomorrow, but in the here and now. Keep moving and forget the post mortems; and remember, no one can get the jump on the future. Carl Sandburg

Abruptly the poker of memory stirs the ashes of recollection and uncovers a forgotten ember, still smoldering down there, still hot, still glowing, still red as red. William Manchester


Dead tree branches
stretch into the gap

impulse moves between trees
on the sluggish wings of a crow.

Throughout life, your neural networks reorganize and reinforce themselves in response to new stimuli and learning experiences. This body-mind interaction is what stimulates brain cells to grow and connect with each other in complex ways. They do so by extending branches of intricate nerve fibers called dendrites (from the Latin word for "tree"). These are the antennas through which neurons receive communication from each other.

A healthy, well-functioning neuron can be directly linked to tens of thousands of other neurons, creating a totality of more than a hundred trillion connections – each capable of performing 200 calculations per second! This is the structural basis of your brain's memory capacity and thinking ability.

As a product of its environment, your "three pound universe" is essentially an internal map of trees that reflects your external world. (italicized words, my additions).

Definition from: The Human Brain


  1. some very interesting pictures - welcome to the Hunt :)

  2. Anonymous3:38 AM

    I *love* the tree pictures, and the quotes, especially the William Manchester one...hmmm.

    Happy Weekend!

    I'm going to read your 150 things now

  3. Very nice photos and welcome to the photo Hunt! Mine is up too at

  4. I love the images and the words and the flow and interaction. I would love to sit down with a giant book of your photos and the quotes and interesting facts you choose and just get lost for a while.

  5. Anonymous7:52 AM

    As always the photos are awe-inspiring and the quotes are thought provoking. I especially liked the excerpt from "The Human Brain"..the Spring semester just started yesterday and the first two weeks I spend time covering biology and behavior and sensation and perception...sometimes my students find this quite boring...if I could only get them to understand it from your perspective...I was thinking....with your permission, I would love to use this post in some format during my lecture. Can you email me?

  6. Fantastic photos!
    Very beautiful, and also the story and quotes to go with them!
    Thank you for sharing.
    Happy Saturday.
    Mine's up too!

  7. Beautiful photos! Wow!

    Mine is up too~

  8. beautiful photos...

    welcome to the Photo Hunt

  9. Great pictures! So peaceful and quiet. Thanks for sharing them with us :)

    My photo is up!

  10. Striking photos and a really great take on today's theme!

  11. Really awesome use of the theme with the photos and the quotes.

    Welcome to the Hunt!


  12. Wonderful!!! Ya know....Robert Frost is my all time favorite poet.

    My memory is also of snow....but a whole different aspect.

  13. Very interesting and the photos are beautiful! Thanks for stopping by mine today.

  14. Thank you for a wonderful post. I love Tuchman's books. Photos are wonderful.

  15. Interesting photos. Thanks for sharing them and those lovely quotes.

  16. Great set of memory quote and photos to go with. Great take on the theme this week.

    Really like the William Manchester quote.

  17. you are ever so gifted.