Tuesday, May 26, 2009

inside the living land

A walk in our bush on the long weekend - beautiful. Wish we could go further and further in without the risk of getting lost (need compass) or being confronted by a bear (need bear-bells? pepper spray?). The feeling of being a guest, a foreigner, a stranger in the unknown depths of trees and trees and fields and trees and trees and stone fences and trees and trees and trees and swamp land... haunting, yet alluring. Like a dream. And it is interesting to me that as captivating as the forest is, we spend so little time in it, have explored so few acres of it.

I've no doubt the issue is perceived safety, but I also know this is mostly fueled by ignorance. I grew up in the fields and bush and creeks of Killaloe (mom called us to dinner with a cow bell), but that was many years ago, and traveling/city streets have instilled in me that 'needing to know' hyper-awareness of one's surroundings, for actual safety. I am sure here the animals will leave me be, for the most part, and the branches will stay put high in the rafters of the forest ceiling, for the most part, but there is never assurance. There is a lot going on in these depths I have yet to understand and trust to know my place in. So instead I respect my unknowing, and leave the acres of trees and trees and animals unscouted. I will learn and wander more as our years together let us grow accustomed. Despite officially being the owner of this land, I know it is not mine.


Janis said...

Hello, Heidi! Just thought I'd stop by and catch up on posts, photos. I love your respect for place. While our acreage is much smaller than yours (approximately five and a half acres), it also includes its share of wildlife such as white-tailed deer, wild turkeys, red-tailed hawks, black snakes, raccoons, groundhogs, opossums, skunks and so much more, plus one of the last remaining small stands of trees that qualify as "old growth" around in an areas where Civil War fighting in 1863 took out most of the trees. We took a walk in the wooded field when we first purchased our home, and, like you, I could not shake the feeling that we could never really *own* this patch of earth, those magnificent hickory, oak, and walnut trees - our role is much more like that of resident caretaker. I hope I am worthy of that role.

Carlo Guillermo said...

"Despite officially being the owner of this land, I know it is not mine."

love it.