Sunday, July 22, 2018

Life Always Wins

Sitting out in the rain, Phoebe seems to be alone, chirping for her mate. We have found the Coppers Hawks. They are off to the East, but noisy as ever. We're glad they are back, but that may be why Phoebe's mate is gone. For the past several weeks I have been watching Phoebe catch insects to feed her babies. The insects were out gathering food to feed their babies. Cooper's Hawk catches small birds to feed hers. I stack firewood in the shed where Phoebe's nest is and disturb the chicks. Our lives all intersect in millions of ways as we each do what we do. If Phoebe's mate is now a part of Cooper's Hawk's babies, Phoebe may not be able to find enough insects to keep all of her babies alive. If Cooper's Hawk gets that surviving Phoebe parent, all the chicks will die in the nest in the wood shed where I will stack wood for the coming Winter. Whatever happens, though, Life will go on. Regardless of who lives, Cooper's Hawk, Phoebe, or me, Life will go on. I will work to decline the invitation to think I can know who should live, and be grateful for that no matter who survives, Life continues.

Saturday, July 21, 2018


Sometimes what I think I am supposed to get informs what I am looking for. My culture invites me to think about life as a cumulative process where success is based on the acquisition of knowledge and stuff. What I see is that life is a process of constant change. Things arrive and depart, knowledge comes and goes. Everything is replaced by different ideas and perspectives. I have settled into place of comfortable not knowing. I wonder what I will see when I stop looking?

Friday, July 20, 2018

Die Like Spider

I found Spider in the shower this morning. She was small, smaller than a pencil eraser. I reached down to help her out, and he leaped at me. This got me thinking about the fine line between death and how to die. If I was faced by an enormous being that I though was going to kill me, I would want to do just what Spider did, leap at it. My culture discourages me from talking about death. Other cultures believe that talking about death can help us appreciate life. Members of some cultures I know of learn a song that they will sing when they are about to die. It is not a sad song. It is a joyful song. It's message is, “I am about to die, but I am not dead yet. I can choose what I will do right up till me last moment. I will go out singing my gratitude for life! Whatever is going to kill me can take my life, but it can't take away the life I have lived! This is the song of my life!” That's how I want to die.

Thursday, July 19, 2018


Real Maine Wild Blueberries are vary small, but so flavorful. We have a patch of them outside the Southern door of the cabin, and noting we can buy in the store compares to them. It is striking how much flavor can come from something so small. My culture invites me to believe that bigger is always better, but these berries stand against that idea. Today, I will be paying attention to times when I am distracted from what something small has to offer, by thinking that bigger or more is always better.

Wednesday, July 18, 2018


There is a large bird of prey hanging out around the cabin. I know this because I have seen her several times, but only brief glimpses. This is because I keep forgetting to pay attention. This morning I saw a flash of her wings and tail as she disappeared in the wood just North of the screen house. It was only in retrospect that I realized that when I came out of the Eastern door there were no birds songs except an alarm call from the South. All the information I needed was there, but I didn't take it in until she was disappearing in front of me. I am left wondering what I will see when I have the presence to notice all that going on around me.

Tuesday, July 17, 2018

Wasp Lesson

There is a Paper Wasp nest near the woodshed. It is small. There are only about four adults tending the babies. The adults fly off to get food, returning and entering the nest from the deck above or through the shed below. They pose no threat to me, unless I get in their way. I have to remember where they are, and attend to what they are doing. I know I can't run she chainsaw close to them, or start the weed whacker under the nest. The noise would trigger an attack. I'm not sure why, but I know this to be true. So I have to pay attention. I appreciate this. I have found that most of the trouble I can get into happens when I'm not paying attention. Paying attention means moving at a pace that allows me to pay attention. In this way, paying attention ripples out into my life, and effects how I do everything. I appreciate these effects because this pacing keeps me focused on the moment, and helps me avoid distractions. The Wasps will be my teachers and remind me if I get off track.

Monday, July 16, 2018


If Phoebe goes after a bug and another bird gets it first or steals it from Phoebe, how many bugs will Phoebe miss by getting upset at the other bird?