Finding God, self, and community in wild spaces. The better we know our wild neighbors the more we'll discover ourselves.
A vision informed by Henry David Thoreau’s interpretation of sauntering, Jesus’ understanding of neighbor, Aldo Leopold’s concept of thinking like a mountain, Rachel Carson’s prophetic voice and John Muir’s way of capturing the beauty and uniqueness of wild neighbors with words.

Sunday, January 5, 2020

Winter Woodland at Barbour Rock

A walk in a winter woodland at Barbour Rock.

The heartbeat of the winter woodland; the taps of woodpeckers against dead limbs of mighty red oaks.

Tap, tap, tap...tap, tap, tap...tap, tap, tap...the hairy woodpecker.

Tap...tap...tap...the pileated.

The arrhythmia of sapsucker will have to wait until Springtime.

The voice of the winter woodland; the deep throaty call of the raven.

The skin of the winter woodland; bark, evergreen leaves of pines, cedar, juniper, laurel, lichens, mosses and club mosses as well as some ferns.

The garment of the winter woodland; a blanket of snow and ice.

The blessing of the winter woodland; stillness for the forest community and for the human spirit.

While I'm happy to have the trail to myself on this cold winter's eve, I'm glad to see that I'm not the only person to have taken a sauntering pilgrimage through this blessed winter forest.

No matter how long I remain here I know that I'm going to wish I'd stayed five minutes longer.

A thin crust of snow covers the ground, trees stand tall around me, the gentlest of winds caresses hemlock branches. Between each breeze, all is at rest with a stillness beyond articulation.

Perhaps I'll stay until the first owl breaks the silence.

A barred owl in the distance...

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