Living as I do in the Southern US, we don't have the kind of ancient, historical cemeteries that you find in Europe or even the East Coast. Be that as it may, you can still find older graveyards in my area, usually from early pioneer settlements and located next to an equally old church. Recently, I posted pictures of a very large cemetery near our Downtown area, but this week I visited a much smaller graveyard, which is located next to a 150 year old Methodist church.
The cemetery is surrounded on all sides by a very large, thorny hedge. I suspect there may be an Elder tree (which is more like a bush in this part of the world) in there somewhere, but I cannot be sure. Even though you can hear the distant sounds of rushing traffic, once you step through the gate and into the cemetery, you still get a feeling of stepping back in time. There are very few of the modern, ugly, flat tombstones in evidence; most of the monuments are old, and of the upright variety. I'm quite sure there are no available spaces left, and one can only be buried here if you have a family plot. There are large trees in the cemetery,which (oddly for my state) are afire with brilliant Fall plumage.
To me, cemeteries are "in-between" places of power and magic. They are simultaneously places of the dead, AND of the living, and you don't find that in many other situations. They are also amazing sources of information, from a historical angle, because you really can learn a lot about peoples' lives and beliefs merely by reading their tombstones. Some people find cemeteries to be frightening, and to be sure, they are not always "welcoming" in their energies, but they are ultimately places of rest, and a place where the living can honour and remember those who have gone before them. They are few crimes I find more abhorrent and abominable than the desecration of cemeteries, and I feel heartbroken when I read about burial grounds being violated by teens or adults who smash headstones and destroy markers for "fun." I sincerely hope that people who do such monstrous things pay a very heavy price for their transgressions.
Anyway, here are some pictures I took. Some of them are spooky, some are a little sad, and some are lovely. This is turning in to a series, as I am making an attempt to visit and photograph most of the local graveyards. Enjoy!