My Happy Place

The mountains of western North Carolina are green as green can be. The leaves of the pines and the oaks, seem to shimmer with life; small, large, yellow, red, long, and wide. Blowing in the wind, the branches seem to flaunt their position as resident ‘home of the birds.’

Small creeks meander through the rough hills and rounded earth, bending rocks and feeding trees. Trout hop up the streams, powerful fins directly serving their precious lives. Deer wander into the shallow waters, hooves carefully navigating the smooth, slippery stones underfoot.

Humans feigning animal instinct, with domestic pets, pick their way through the bramble, attempting the quiet of the creatures in their home. We walk in the waters of the creek, upsetting the stream more than our deer brothers and sisters.

And the creatures, they tolerate the humans. We like to kill their trees and still they shade me. Those deer, we trample their grass and still they watch me carefully as I wander in their home, their ushagoo, their home-home, the heart-home.

The heart of the woods is the shared life of the cosmic Creator. The shared life that is in me and you and the caterpillars and the Pileated Woodpecker biting on the bird feed out the window.


the sky and the trees
are reflected
in the still waters

staring down
at the lake
my eye
flicks
in and out of focus
the edges blurring
water and sky
blending
like paints

the fish gather in groups
their fins fluttering in the
endless lake of a clouded
early morning

they swim through
the murky upside down reef of
pines and perennial giants

what is this
wonder-filled world,
I say to my God above,
where fish breathe water
and my sky,
my reflection rests
on their backs –
we are all here
together.


My place is here in the mountains – where the heart of the Creator is fiery bright, animals coexisting, and me, coexisting.

 

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