Do I Dare Call You Friend?

I walked into the bedroom on the first floor facing the front gardens and the street that curves like a river. There, outside the window, at 9 o’clock in the morning, not 10 feet away, beneath the Amur Maple, was a deer lying on the ground in repose. 

I felt awe of her trusting peacefulness as she gazed at me and I at her. She appeared young, maybe a year or two, all alone and so uncharacteristically calm and trusting. Then my heart recognized her as the recently born fawn who had come up to me in my garage braying desperately for her mama. A smile spread across my face and heart as I remembered our encounter a couple of years ago. 

Now, after our gentle gazing, she rose and walked to the shade garden. Looking back at me she allowed me a photo and a wave of peaceful presence in this moment. A reminder that amid world turmoil, mass shootings, war, and all manner of injustice, we turn to the natural world and rest in the splendor before us.  

Do I dare call you friend?
We never had a discussion
nor a hug or touch
only a cry for help from you
as you stood at my feet looking up
then later a penetrating gaze
recognizing something familiar
known only within my heart and yours
.

I go to nature to be soothed and healed, and to have my senses put in order.

John Burroughs

Look deep into nature, and then you will understand everything better.

Albert Einstein

There’s a whole world out there, right outside your window. You’d be a fool to miss it.

Charlotte Ericksson

Ongoing Resource List: Books for the Mind and the Heart

  • The Faraway Nearby by Rebecca Solnit
  • Soul an Archaeology Edited by Phil Cousineau
  • A Path With Heart by Jack Kornfield
  • Listening Point by Sigurd Olson
  • I Sit Listening to the Wind by Judith Duerk
  • Dancing Moons by Nancy Wood
  • The Soul of Rumi, Translations by Coleman Barks
  • Keep Going by Joseph M. Marshall III
  • Arriving at your own Door by Jon Kabat-Zinn
  • The Untethered Soul by Michael Singer
  • The Hidden Secrets of Water by Paolo Consigli
  • Conquest of Mind by Eknath Easwaran
  • Color: A Natural History of the Palette by Victoria Finlay
  • Peace is Every Step by Thich Nhat Hanh
  • I Thought It Was Just Me (But It Isn’t) by Brene Brown
  • Practicing Peace in Times of War by Pema Chodron
  • When Things Fall Apart by Pema Chodron
  • On Death and Dying by Elizabeth Kubler-Ross
  • Unattended Sorrow by Stephen Levine
  • Joy in Loving, Mother Theresa
  • The Joy of Living by Yongey Mingyur Rinpoche
  • Let Your LIfe Speak by Parker Palmer
  • Zen and the Art of Saving the Planet by Thich Nhat Hanh
  • The Essence of the Upanishads by Eknath Easwaran
  • Welcoming the Unwelcome by Pema Chodron
  • Braiding Sweetgrass by Robin Wall Kimmerer
  • Medicine Cards: The Discovery of Power Through The Ways Of Animals by Jamie Sams and David Carson
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