Sunday, August 16, 2009

bears, and wolves, and . . .

I know bears

I know black bears
and I love black bears,
and, like people, I know there are levels upon levels
of who they are that are hidden from me,
and yet their essence burns through the obscuring mists,
and I do know them,

all things are connected,
all living things are even further connected,

I enjoy getting to know those most distant--
those fellow travelers who are of matter
yet lack spirit, consciousness,
that with which DNA binds all life,
and there are wondrous stories that rock, fire, water live,

I love all my cousins who share those original directions:
from algae and moss to flower and redwood,
from insect and salamander to mountain goat and river otter,

yet there is a special place in my heart for the wolf & the bear,

I have felt transformed when I’ve watched them be, and parent,
I have seen them model and let their young have some attitude
as each works on finding its own way within the common,

today as I bicycled through the cove,
I came upon bears grazing in black cherry trees,

mother and cub hard at work finding and eating

every possible cherry before them,

in a hundred photos I sought to capture

their hunger,
their focus,
their joy in climbing
and testing the limits of their own dexterity
and the strength of the branch,

each time I lingered longer than the other bikers and walkers:
watching, learning, savoring,
as I sought to find a way to let the essence of their selves
reveal itself to me and to my snapping, snapping camera.

by Henry Walker
August 12, ‘09

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