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Themes:     Nature & Environment (51)  
Tags:    Beauty     Nature     Silence     Winter
michil Monday, 1 February 2010

There and then, just for a fleeting moment, I was part of it.

A rustling of, a swift movement. Just a shadow vanishing. My very steps had led it to flee. In an instant its cry was far. Oh no, the panic and energy spent could prove fatal.
Fleecy and pure is the snow for us but threatening and unforgiving is it for the deer in the wood, here near Boé. My fault it was – I scared it away. What a fool I had been.
There and then, just for a fleeting moment, I was part of it.
The deer is more delicate than you would imagine – its muscles are not those of a stag, its taste is refined and only nibbling at the pretruding leaves of trees it is hardly able to nourish itself well enough. Plentiful hay is but a dream.
The deer must tread carefully – these days are colder than cold and the most innocent of false moves could bring satisfaction to the eagle alone. My self indulgence has put it at risk. I kneel in the snow, aware of the foolish trespass. Remorse is all I have to offer.
I am transfixed under the two larch trees, full of self disgust for the violation done. Then, from the corner of my eye, I spot a sort of vapour that rises from a human size boulder partially covered by snow. I turn quickly, for in that instant I feel observed. I wish to escape but I am drawn closer as if pulled in by the observing eye. All is still and I draw back a step or two, lifting my head in a risposte of alert: the two larches are fluttering gently. It seems they are critical of the strange object with paperlike feet below them. Feeling slightly uneasy I remove the snow rackets and sit on them. A significant time passes, perhaps an hour, perhaps more. It starts to snow again. Then, my eyes firmly fixed on that grand boulder it happens again: nothing more than a puff but this time I saw it clearly and unmistakeably. I rise and with focus fixed I move to investigate the very point where that white cloudlike vision came from. Nothing. Nothing at all there. I lean forward with my ear, doing all to stifle my very breath. I wait. Patiently and silently I wait. At least an hour passes. A breath, a something, causes me to jump. I react, head back, I look, I touch, I smell. Nothing, nothing at all. I challenge again, this time leading with my other ear. No sign, no sensation.
I am shaking with the cold. I put the snow rackets back on. I see the giant larches leaning towards me. It seems they are smiling at my lack of perception, at my inadequate senses, so feeble am I and so lacking my senses, a human not justice to his primeval ancestor. The retreating I spot a deer, surely the one from before. It is close to a small tree not more than 20 metres away and this time it does not move. Then I realise why: in that very instant Nature has let me in, has greeted me. Nature wanted me as a part of it. It did it in a way that I heard the rocks themselves breathe. In our short lives we fail to understand. The truth is that we ourselves are part of Nature and there and then, for that fleeting moment, it was mine to cherish.
I could not have asked for more. To be aware of it was my crowning glory.
I think the very woods knew of my sensation, or at least for a moment I had this profound sensation, as if I had been accepted. As if by instinct, of shared and mutual respect, no attempt was made by either to go beyond that imaginary but very real border – the drawing line of Nature. We kept our distance but were as of one. Man and animal are perhaps born to be so – a heightened understanding of one and each’s existence our prize.
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