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Surprising Coyote

  The thing I least expect is to be tricked into laughing. My plan is to blubber and wallow. It’s going well. I am stewing in my stories of defeat. This I choose. But I am not the only one here. And I am not the only one who chooses. I am interrupted by the arrival of the Sacred Fool. A springy young male emerges from the willows. He is so close I smell the forest on his fur. I am levitating in delight. He doesn’t see me. Now he does! Leaps in a goofy spasm, darting away with his ears...

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End of the Road

Thanks to my husband’s regular reminders, I’m aware of the phenomenon whereby we selectively register information that reinforces our existing views. Perhaps I am guilty of that. I’m the first to admit that I am skeptical of gadgets and the way that our over-reliance on technology distorts our experience. Given those disclaimers, I find myself wanting to share the news story about the man who drove off an abandoned freeway, inadvertently killing his wife, because he was apparently paying more...

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On Outdoor Re-creation

I’ve always enjoyed exploring the wilderness. I have never understood why more people don’t do it, though perhaps deep down I’m grateful not to have hordes of other humans out there.  It’s like this ridiculously well-kept secret. Why? This piece on the death of backpacking asks the same question. The author believes backpacking in particular is not popular “because younger people are leery of the unglamorous labor required for stepping off pavement, and too occupied with the easiness of TV,...

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Trail

  The trouble began with the lies about Eden and Eve. I hid my nakedness. Pressed my school uniform. Conjugated verbs. Rode the subway to my cubicle. Took notes in meetings. Aspired to productivity. Trailing the deer my long confinement in shame is fading. The snake coiled by the stream says nothing of separation. Water flows through the aspen grove where the many are one and I weave through their fine trunks on hooves of light and belonging.  ...

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Whose Agenda?

  A friend of mine teaches outdoor survival skills. Things like friction fire-making, animal tracking, finding water, bow hunting, and so on. Something that came up in a recent conversation had to do with the way humans are always bringing our agendas to nature. We generally go into nature not to give, but to get something. A few of the people my friend works with are interested in deep nature connection and awareness. But most come to her because they see this as a way to feel capable...

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