Tag Archives: anti-civ

Thursday June 8th; A Wild Kind of Love

Thursday June 8th

Partly cloudy, 70’s, full moon tomorrow, early evening

photo by natasha

 

A couple of weeks ago while they were out foraging,  Wil and our sweet friend Ben found a deer that had been killed by coyotes.

The kill was so recent that most likely Wil and Ben had scared the hunters away from their meal as they passed through, which meant that there were fresh coyote tracks scattered throughout the area, and the deer’s blood still ran liquid from its wounds.

By the time I was able to get out to check out the spot later that day, flies were already busily laying their eggs in the meat and hide, and the doe’s beautiful eyes had clouded over. Cool to the touch, eviscerated, and peppered with bite wounds, laying a hand on her flank I said a quiet thanks for the chance to see such a thing here in this fairly urban woodland, and hoped her death had been quick and as painless as possible.

Wil and I have long suspected that coywolves prowled this particular area. On the line between urban/suburban park/woodland, and the manicured greens of a popular golf course, there’s a wooded hillside closed to hikers that borders the river on one side. A stealthy wild  canine could happily reside in such a spot and hunt and forage in the surrounding areas including the edges of the city and about 500 acres of park with a healthy, thriving deer population. If I was a coywolf, its certainly the place that I would choose to call home. (Actually, I’d be happy to call such a place home as a human too! But I digress…)

We’ve looked for sign of them before and as my love of coyotes has grown over the years so have our tracking efforts. But our searching resulted in not much- a couple of questionable, dusty half-tracks, and a small sample of possible scat. And yet, all of our instincts were telling us this land was the perfect spot for them.

In recent years the Coywolf population has blossomed here in the northeast and all over eastern north america. Also called the Eastern Coyote, the name Coywolf refers to their genetic make-up, a mixture of  Eastern Wolf, Western Coyote, and Domestic Dog. As wolf populations dropped wolves began to mate with western coyotes and the coywolf hybrid was born.

Incredibly secretive, mostly nocturnal and happy dwelling in the edgy kind of habitats we humans are so fond of creating, the Coywolf is filling an incredibly important predatorial niche in habitats all over its range.

I was happy just suspecting they were living here. But to know for sure? Makes my heart skip a beat.

Because theirs is a story of adaptation, of resiliency. Of wolves and coyotes finding a way to raise families and stay alive under impossible odds and nearly constant persecution by our agricultural  society. It’s a story of shape shifting, of cultural adaptation and the survival of an ancient way of life in the face of a civilization at war with all things wild.

I would still love to see a Coywolf, and maybe I will someday. It’s an especially tantalizing thought now that I know they are actually right there, practically my neighbors.

But part of me just wants them to stay hidden. To live out their secret primal lives without human eyes, or our desires, landing upon them.

And that’s a special kind of love, a wild kind of love. The kind of love we don’t need to possess to enjoy, where just feeling the presence of another’s soul is enough, and there is great joy in knowing they are free.

This piece is dedicated to our dog Buck, who passed away a few days ago and totally broke our hearts in a way I was not expecting. He was our faithful companion for over 12 years, and was for sure woven into the very fabric of our lives. Hope you felt you had a good life buddy, and hope the hunting is good where you are now. Love you old boy, we all miss you very much.

 

Sat. April 15th, I see you

Saturday April 15th

afternoon, cloudy and beautiful, 70’s, blue sky, full moon was on the 11th

photo by natasha

Last night as I washed the dishes I saw my mother’s hands. Running the sponge over each plate, cup, and bowl, each fork and spoon, I saw her small hands there in front of me, superimposed against mine. I saw her in the curve of my wrist and the slope of my shoulders. I saw her, night after night, washing dishes in her darkened kitchen, the house quiet with family either asleep or heading that way.

I saw my grandmother too. As I put away the salt, and the pepper, cleaned the counter and wiped the table. I saw her in her nightgown, with bare feet quiet against the floor, putting her house to sleep.

I saw my great grandmother as I turned out the lights and sat down on the couch to relax, to put my feet up after a full spring day.

I see them, these women, and so many more as I go through my days. I can feel them. I feel my grandmother, my father’s mother, as I plant flowers outside, feel the dark soil on my knees, and feel the cool earth on my skin. I feel my Aunts in the sound of my laugh and the crinkle by my eyes, I feel my sister in my strong hands and sure stride. I feel my cousins as I read, write, play with my son, sit in the sun , and smile.

How many women have led me to this place? How many women have carried me here, on their shoulders and in their arms? How many women do I carry in my bones, in my cells, in my heart? My women, my ancestors; all the women , all the ancestors. How many?

I can see them as I hang the laundry in the sun, dish towels flapping like prayer flags in the wind.

I can see them, washing clothes, by the river, in the bathtub, at the laundromat, in the washing machine. Alone, with others, laughing, crying, talking.

I can see them with round bellies and full breasts, nursing babies, carrying babies under their hearts and in their arms, carrying babies on their sides, shoulders, and backs, carrying the world in their hands.

I can see them building houses, sitting in offices, typing on computers, talking on the phone, presenting at meetings, painting, taking photos, writing, farming, fixing cars, working as doctors, and lawyers. I see them leading countries, leading families, leading the world.

I see them scrubbing floors, scrubbing toilets; cooking over hot stoves, open flames, in the microwave, eating out.

I see them under the blue sky, soaked with rain, walking through dusty desert, diving into icy waters of tumultuous oceans.

I see them travelling the world, in kayaks, in canoes, in ocean liners, in planes, in cars, in trains, in rocket ships.

I see them in love, I see them with broken hearts, I see them angry, excited, grieving, happy, wild with hope.

I see them, bruised and battered, abused, frightened, bound. I see them breaking those chains. I see them rising up.

I see them making homes, making families, making art, making love, making life.

I see them scared. I see them anxious. I see them worried.

I see them strong. I see them courageous. I see them brave.

I feel you all here with me as I make lunch for my small son, as I fill a cup with coffee and sit down to drink, as I watch the clouds playing across the sky through the window and let the dogs outside to run.

And I thank you. I thank all the women across the whole world, all the women across the whole world from the beginning of time, all the animal women too, because I know our experiences are much the same.

I thank you for all the work you do, the love you pour into the world each day, the rocks you carry, the secrets that you keep, and for the wild passion that lives in your heart.

I thank you. I love you. And, most importantly,

I see you.

Love,

Natasha

“mountains” embroidery by natasha

cardboard superheroes, March 13th

March 13th

cold, high 20’s, sunny, few clouds. Large snow storm expected tonight. Full moon yesterday

This weekend we made cardboard superheroes. Wil helped the boys cut them out and then they colored them and have been playing with them non-stop. The process got me thinking.

I believe that civilization is killing the planet.  I believe that this civilization, and the western consumer culture that even at this moment spreads farther and farther across the globe, is completely at odds with delicate ecological structure of this planet. I believe our civilization, and our culture as it exists right now, is doomed to fail, and indeed is failing now. Even as we speak we are losing species. Even as I sit here typing this the planet’s very climate shifts in ways completely out of our control.

But, I also believe wholeheartedly in the earth’s capacity to create. In her ability to roll with the punches, in her ability to change, to adapt, to stun us with her resiliency and creativity. She truly is the mother of invention, and the mother of us all.

As her children, we too, carry her bold instinct for survival, her desire for life, and her ability to create.

At our worst we are mean. We are small. We act out of fear and in a blind kind of panic.

But at our best? We are fully alive. We envision. We make, we  generate, we re-generate. We mimic. We invent. We love.

At our worst we are very bad.

But at our best? We are a wonder. A creature like any other, with an enormous capacity for adaptation and change.

I believe our civilization is killing the planet. I believe it is completely at odds with the ecological processes that must be able to happen here for us all to survive, for the earth to survive. But does that make me sad? No, not really.

Because I look at my child, the kids in my life. I spend time with them. I watch them making things. Drawing, inventing, crafting, creating. I see them playing, how their brains have an endless capacity for invention, and how their spirits are not yet dimmed by the the toughness of life.

There is a way forward here, I just know, I feel it. In order to transform our culture, if there is a way to truly change this civilization, the blueprint of a new world, and the map for the journey is most certainly held in the earth beneath our feet, woven among the stars in the sky and written in our very own hearts.

Another way of living is possible. Truly it is. It has existed before and can exist again.

So make, create. With abandon. Let’s sharpen our minds, and busy our hands. Let’s teach our children to do the same.

Because if a  mind can see a superhero in a box made of cardboard, certainly that same mind will have a chance at helping to lead us out of this box.

That’s the stuff that superheroes are made of. They’re scrappy. They’re bright. They’re brave.

And they most certainly are what we need right now.

cardboard superheroes by Wil and the boys