This Tree is Better Than A Cold Shower

Ouch is a recent photographic work of the Floss Silk Tree. This tree naturally grows spikes along its trunk to protect itself from foraging animals.

I imagine it’s a very effective defense.   These peculiar trees grow in tropical and subtropical climates and reach heights of 40 ft.  They love to grow in the full sun and produce large pink or red flowers in the late summer or early fall.

Usually these trees are often grown in the United States only for the purpose of ornamentation of garden paths and some arboretums. However, in some parts of the tropics ranchers and farmers use this type of tree as a form of living fence post to hang barbed wire between and keep livestock from wandering.

This particular tree I captivated me by the way the tropical sunlight created a distinct pattern of contrast. OuchThe sunlight and shadow played off of each sharp tip spike in perfect harmony.

It does not take a lot of imagination to realize the level of pain caused by an unintentional collision with this monster would be. Trying to imagine why anyone would want to climb such a thing reminded me of a Thai and Mahayana and Vajrayana Buddhist legend from Southeast Asia.   Each culture has it’s own way of promoting certain values among its members and Asian culture is no different.

As with most the cultures in the world, Thai culture has a very negative outlook on the practice of adultery. As with most cultures, the Thai reinforce the notion that adultery is taboo and costs the offender greatly.

The legends state that upon death, an adulterer will face the servants of Yamaraja the Demigod of Death in hell. These demonic servants will force the adulterer to climb spiked trees using spears and knives into the waiting jaws of razor beaked eagles in the upper branches.

Not exactly what I would call a pleasant image. In fact, I think you’d agree with me that the imagery of that punishment works better than a seriously cold shower on the libido, if you know what I mean.   Yikes…

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