Update . . . While I was away last week two hundred plus gorgeous wild swans were spotted on the wetland. Wow! Our little preserve seems to have become a very important resting spot for them as well as for quite a few other species of migratory water fowl. Other ponds and nearby wetlands just don't seem to have the same appeal. Perhaps the birds sense our dedicated vigilance and protection?
Last night was full of mystery and change. Rain, then snow, sleet and ice fell fast and heavy on our little world, sending the tentative hopefullness of spring back into the cold realities of winter.
All night the wind blew, shivering the trees, moaning around the house and outbuildings. Historic amounts of snow began to pile up. Small horses, chickens and cattle, tilted their heads, listening. Everyone seemed grateful and content to be out of the elements, nestled safe in stalls and coop.
As I lay awake in next mornings early dawn thoughts and images of a recent journey flitted through my consciousness. It was to one of the last great wildernesses that I'd traveled. A place where the imprint of humanity is much smaller than here. A place where most of the land remains prestine, remote, observant and waiting.
My younger sister lives there. At the end of the world, on a jut of land between inlet and bay. Mountains loom across the water. Cold, austere and strangely beautiful, they sweep up from sea to sky, their reflections littered with flotillas of broken ice. One wouldnt know that beneath them earth's hot blood boils, sometimes erupting from cone-shaped peaks which at present look so quiet and innocent.
That is the way of things though it seems. The unseen, the danger and unrest, the burning vitality of life just below what can be grasped by the ordinary senses. The wild pulse of hearts and natures ready to erupt, for better or worse.
I hadnt seen my sister for almost thirty years, virtually a lifetimes worth of experience and living. Divided by family disorders and loyalties, the distance appeared endless, insurmountable. Always though, just beneath the surface, was a faint ember of knowing. The inner whisperings of the heart singing, "Someday, somehow . . ."
Then it happened. The first tentative steps, then later, trust, sharing, and longer bolder strides. Until the distance was bridged, the past integrated, the long-journey nearly complete.
Tears flowed, laughter and joy warmed the space that'd once held the emptiness of lost comradery and love. Two sisters, two hearts, despite all odds, united.
As eagles watched, we walked arm in arm, along the rocky, windswept shores of the sea, and full circle into the present . . .
The Promise of spring. A pair of swans our wetland preserve, and the arrival of a tiny, gorgeous spirit horse!
Five days old, born on the equinox . . .
After spending three magical days and nights with us our amazing turkey friends vanished. Returning to the wild, just as mysteriously as they had come.
While they visited the turkeys followed me everywhere, seeming to have no fear. In the morning they were waiting by the front door, then would come along as I walked the rounds of chores.
First the big tom, then all the hens followed along down the little path, and yes, even on into the barn.! They were all so curious, investigating everyone and everything. Once satisfied they stood around watching and chirping as I fed and watered all our usual barn friends.
The really odd thing was, it was never about food as some might like to think. They just seemed genuinely to want to be near us, strangely curious and bonded. And always looking up, talkative. Chattering away in their own mysterious and ancient language, as if trying to convey something of great importance.
Two of the nights the turkeys flew to the top of our two story house and roosted on the peak of the roof. The third night they took up position on the front porch. Two roosting on the back of the bench left of the door, two on the back of the bench right of the door. As if they were watching over us, sentinels of earth energy and and deep wild power.
The next morning the turkeys were up early, a rosy-gold light tinting the frosty trees and ground. They hopped off their perches, then walked single file away towards the woods. Never to be seen again.
The experience was astounding, the magic intense, real and humbling. We will never see a turkey the same again.
The spirit of Earth Eagle came, there was grace, we are honored.
Snow lies on the ground, winter continuing to shroud the land. Most of the wild animals are staying hidden away out of sight. Only the occasional set of tracks testifies to unseen activities and lives.
That is why this mornings encounter was such a surprise..
First there was a commotion in the yard Our male shepherd was stalking something. Then there was a whirl of black and white fur, flapping wings and grey-brown feathers. We called out, hurriedly retrieving our little buddy from his glorious chase.
To our surprise the feathers belonged to a large wild tom turkey. Along with three hens the bird had evidently been snatching food from the bird feeder-tub on the front porch.
After a few minutes every one had calmed down and our new acquaintances cautiously climbed the few steps back onto the porch.
We watched in awe. In a lifetime of experience and nature watching neither of us had ever been this close to a wild turkey. Normally these wary creatures flee in a panic before one even sees them. And these were completely wild birds.
After a time of viewing them through the large sliding door, I ventured to squat down and open it a crack. Speaking softly, I held out a handfull of seeds and corn. The turkeys chirped, gurgled and tweeted sweetly amongst themselves, seeming more cautious and curious than afraid.
Soon the hen with the bluest head approached. She held my gaze for a moment or two, considering. Then she actually took the feed. Slowly, gently I reached towards her with the other hand. We connected, my fingers brushing the feathery softness of her breast, the moment was powerful, pure.
The magic continued. For hours. My new friends were soon following along behind as I made my way to the barn for morning chores. They investigated everything. The buildings, the fences, the other animals. Then as I threw some scratch feed to Mr. Rooster and his hens, I called toward the turkeys. Gathering around my feet, they watched attentively as I tossed a little feed their way too.
Then it was back to the house. The turkeys stayed by the barn, hens feeding,. male intent on displaying and performing a little wing dragging circle dance. Claiming his girls, his new territory.
After a while I went back outside and called. It was truly amazing. There the turkeys came, slowly, single file, from the nearby cedar woods. Through the yard, up the path and back onto the porch to peck up the cracked corn placed in a pan for them.
And I've heard it said that turkeys are among the stupidest of animals. These amazing wild beings learned in one un-orchestrated session the meaning of my sing-song dinner call.
When you are your authentic self, walking in stillness, not wanting, nature and Mother Earth respond. Then, in innocence, true connection takes place.
Sacred messengers of abundance, trust, dignity, innocence, peace, harmony and shared blessings.
The Curious One
Last night lightening flashed, thunder rumbled and the wind howled along the drive and lane. The shapes of tall white pines swayed wildly against the dark of the sky. As I lay awake listening, the change was palpable, the night full of mystery, and magic.
Later I dreamed of a young woman with the wide fierce eyes of an owl. She stood on a mountain top, dark hair flying in the wind. Music came, she danced to a gypsy tune and reached out, hand seeking mine.
Rain thrummed steadily on the roof. Tears spilled down my cheeks. Staining the pillow, shimmering softly in the first faint light of the coming dawn.
I recalled a time long ago, when the still of the winter solstice and the dark of the new moon conspired to bring on a birth. A little girl. The third of three lives I would love with the deep, true love only a mothers heart knows.
She was mystery and quiet, beauty and night. A child of the deep, the winter, the horse-path of ancient knowledge and wisdom. A precious gift from the Great Divine.
* * *
Tonight an owl calls in the dark. Snow enfolds the earth, bringing softness and silence. The solstice grows nearer.
Decades have waxed and waned, solstices and winters come and gone. Yet still, the memory is present and clear. Through the disordered maze of stones and sorrows littering the way between us, Love flows. A great strong river, sweeping away all doubt. The time is precious and unforgotten.
In my dreams the raven haired girl remembers too . . .
The dark thins and fades, the owl falls silent. Dawn dances rose and gold along the eastern edge of the horizon. Night reaches completion and winter nods bravely to the warmth and possibilities of spring.
The sun is on the verge of a long slow rise away from this shadow-time of healing and reflection.
The light is returning, inevitably, and surely as it has for countless generations. Life goes on. The cycles turning, completing, turning again. And just as surely, Love goes on too. Lighting the dark, dancing on the mountain tops, whispering its secrets and possibilities on the wind
You are mystery and quiet
Beauty and night
Daughter of the winter
Child of the Light . . .
Love and Blessings,
Well here we are again. In that space between summer and winter.
This morning the first light of the sun turned dew into diamonds, and warmed the autumnal flowers into fragrance. Cranes called to their families and lifted off. Their lanky, blue grey shapes silhouetted against a backdrop of just harvested, grain-fields gave weight to the change sensed clearly in the air. From beneath a pile of stones, a cricket chirped, the slow notes of his song betraying last nights lingering chill.
Stepping through the silvery damp of the grasses, my feet left a trail of bent blades and dark green prints. Spiders clung to sagging webs draped from weed to weed. Silken strands held the moisture, looking like tiny strings of translucent pearls in the new light.
Soft calls and restless movements announced my arrival as I drew nearer the barn. Enclosed safely within wood sided corrals, gentle-eyed cows and tiny horses waited, each eager for apple treats and release into their grazing fields.
Begging goodies for his hens, Mr. Rooster called out too. Taking care of them all, and walking proud little mares and stallion to their pasture, each moment shone with beauty, and grace.
Just as chores were finished our resident Redtail Hawk came to perch in the cedar grove just north of the barn. She whistled in greeting as she often does. I spoke out softly to her. She answered, honoring our little world with a cascade of talkative chucks and chirps.
Unafraid, this fierce creature of the wild trusts and communicates. Even asking for help when 'great-white-hunters' come stalking the nearby woods.
Life is truly amazing in its interconnectedness.
If only the illusion could be dispelled and we all understood that separation does not actually exist. That nothing, and no one, is ever really alone. That unobstructed connection and trust, carries us through the gateway. Unveils our authentic selves. And ultimately, brings us face to face with destiny.
Last night there was more rain. Splashing on the deck. Filling the ponds to overflowing. Drumming steadily on the roof.
This morning the wild honeysuckle along the lane had turned from yesterdays bare brown to a hedge of lacy, green. In their rock-edged gardens, daffodils nodded, growing fuller by the moment. In just a day or two there will be clumps of happy yellow blossoms.
New life is all around us here on the farm. Trees are budding, songbirds incubating clutches of eggs, and even insects have suddenly appeared. The grass and early weeds are already several inches high.
In the barn, feathers rustling softly, a hen clucks and settles on her nest box. Our male dove adds his gentle tones. Throat puffed, he coos and dances for his own pink-footed lady.
I toss some feed in a bucket.
Mama goat dives in, eating hungrily. At her side, tails wagging, two goatlings suckle vigorously at her full, warm udder. Just a few days old, the little twins have already been playing king-of-the-mountain on the old cinder blocks in their enclosure!
Deep in her straw bedded stall, a tiny mare munches hay, feeling the kicks and stirrings of her unborn foal. Small cow stares, and shakes her horns. She lows softly. Soon it will be her turn at pregnancy and birth.
Taking care of them all, the wonder of new life is present and real.
A small, red form zips by my feet. I can't help but smile.
It's evident, when you are a fuzzy puppy, every day is a very good day indeed.
Happy Springtime Blessings,
Welcome Friends. . . .