Madonna of the Forest

Madonna of the Forest

During my three months of anthropological fieldwork in Montepio, Veracruz, part of the tropical forest area of Mexico, I often took walks along a dirt path paralleling the ocean. During one of my walks, I met this little girl who offered me a glass of water, and afterward sat on this log in the forest. Having my camera with me, I felt compelled to capture her forlorn expression. Her head was encircled with the only bright light in this part of the deep dark tropical forest. It reminded me of Medieval and Renaissance paintings of the Virgin with a halo encircling her head.

The photograph leaves you wondering what was ahead for this little girl.