A haiku photo journal

Cooper Peterson is a senior at UVM majoring in Biological Sciences. Cooper combined photos and poetry to tell the story of a complex Vermont ecosystem.

Cooper writes, “For this piece I wanted to capture what I consider to be the important dynamics of herping as both a discipline and a passion. I begin with a slight scientific perspective and paint a picture of an ecosystem; the image of a tranquil stream and the juxtaposition of an innocent testudines’ eggs and the looming threat of the predator. From here I try to capture and conjure up the more abstract feelings of mystery and excitement that one has when questing through the woods. There is a certain wanderlust in going out and trying to find the creatures hidden under rocks and logs. It is from these underlying emotions that I chose to work solely within the haiku. The confined expression of the haiku phrase prevents the audience from getting every detail, there is an unknown mystery and they must read between the lines in order to understand. In the same light, a herper does not immediately know what is out there in nature, but they must search for the minutiae that can lead them to their quarry.”