‘Fallen Cedar / Rising Dragon’

Oil on Canvas Board  12″ X 16″

This fallen cedar, toppled perhaps a hundred years ago, still commands such a presence.
It draws my attention, calling me into a deep contemplation of it
when I come upon the sight on the bank of the creek in the forest.

I see Celtic knot-work in the patterns of the tangled roots ~ this speaks to me of ancestors.

I smell the richness of the oh-so-slow return to the earth, its mother;

the ancient tree providing sustenance and mothering, in turn, to the myriads of mossy & microscopic lives that blanket its every surface

~ this speaks to me of the cycles of regeneration and immortality.

I feel reverence ~ this speaks to me of sovereignty and power.


Then I see the dragon, rising, and understand;

now I know what to paint to best express this experience.


Dragons are symbolic of the recurring cycles of death and rebirth, of ancient subterranean energies stirring.

They are guardians of treasures and keepers of secrets.

They are wise and clairvoyant; embodiments of life force, great potency and primal energies.

Cedars are symbolic of longevity and nobility, rebirth, purity, and sublime loftiness; entrances into sacred realms.

The upside-down tree, roots reaching skyward, symbolizes the esoteric return journey.

Celtic Knot-work is symbolic of connectedness, immortality and continuity.


~Barbara Brown, from Volume I, SYLVAN REFLECTIONS, Wanderings, Paintings & Ponderings From the Forest, Page 25