Meditation Walk

Today, I received an email from Worth Cooley-Prost, an artist in Alexandria, VA. She asked me to send thoughts to her of what I see and she asked that I pray for her Glass Exhibit called Portals. In response, I went on a Meditation Walk around the loop, a dirt road near my property. Along the way, I stepped off the beaten path into the sand dunes where we hold Water Ceremony in Northwest Wisconsin in season. The first thing I noticed was beautiful miniature soldier moss with their dainty little red hats. Some moss was already laden with the first signs of frost. As I strolled into this sacred space, I encountered deer foot prints and possible wolf scat. As I approached the sacred circle where we hold ceremony I saw a female adult deer near Jack pine who casually walked away and hid among fur trees and hard wood forest to the south. Then from the west,  I heard a crow at about the same time as I smelled the aroma of sweet fern that was a dense colony and climbing over the dunes from the west.

It was here that I whispered Worth’s intentions for the Art Exhibit – Portals. Thinking on the meaning of portals I thought of  dimensions, doors or gateways. First I realized that a female deer silently passed though a portal between Jack pines; an unseen crow flew through the air through a space portal and signified sound as it cawed. The sweet fern that now was growing over the sand dune came though another portal. They came through soil and aroma portals. There are all kinds of portals above us, below us, around us and within us if we open sacred space within, around and beyond us. We can even pass through portals to other dimensions that exist in the Universe. We can be thankful to those beings whom we can not see.  There are portals beyond our understanding. This doesn’t mean they don’t exist. Sometimes in our human existence we can be hindered by our own thoughts. I pray that all my portals or gateways are open and that I am a conduit of understanding.

As a parting thought, I gathered a few sprigs of sweet fern to represent aroma, a dash of white sage to represent the sacred and furry native small bluestem seed to represent the feral cat I also saw as I walked around the loop a little later. Black and white, it paused long enough to gaze at me from a safe distance resting on a downed tree and camouflaged by leaves. I talked to the cat and told the animal that I loved him/her. I said a prayer that the creature would find food, warmth and shelter this winter. I hope to encounter the cat again. I will start to carry some dry cat food as I walk this way again in another Meditation Walk.

Now I will package the nature gift and mail it to Worth. She deserves my thoughts, reflections and intention.

Be happy insectamonarca friends where ever you are.

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Eco Adventure in Wisconsin – day five

It is Tuesday.

Today is the day I am going to the little village of Minong, home to 561 souls.  It is the first day in five that I have seen a person.  My husband came to take me shopping.  I need to buy bread, a new brush for Sadie and eggnog with nutmeg for Christmas morning.  

This morning was truly a winter wonderland.  Sadie and I saw at least a hundred birds on the side of the country road nibbling grass and flower seed and I suspect spotted knapweed seedhead. 

Flower seed incapsulated in down

Flower seed incapsulated in down.

Knapweed seedhead

Spotted knapweed seedhead.

  Knapweed is an invasive species.  Each flower head has 20,000 seeds.  The seeds are eaten by birds and then deposited in another unsuspecting native habitat.

Then while washing dishes, I saw the birds on the slope of the hill where some native grasses were not completely covered with snow.  Again they were feasting.  I put out two handfuls (daily) of sunflower seed.  The migrating sparrows ate from our supplies.  They were close enough to identify from the cabin.  After the sparrows left the chickadee and nut thrash flew in to enjoy a feast too.  By the way I need a bird book out here and I think binoculars would be a great aid too.  Even squirrels get along with the small birds and no one was greedy as they all enjoyed a fresh supply of sunflower seeds.

 I could hardly wait to go out snowshoeing later in the morning.  As I started through the old field I noticed all the plants were covered with a coating of magical snow dusting.  Each and every one glistened.  Even the trees looked like they were kissed with hoarfrost.  The sun hit the branches and they twinkled like stars.  As I walked across the field on my snowshoes the snow sparkled in the sunlight.  This is my favorite time of snow time when the snow and every living plant glistens.

I saw the large boulder yesterday.

Grandfather boulder

Grandfather boulder.

  It was at least three moraines back from the road.  I was anxious to see the boulder and learn if it was on my land.  This is a new interesting leap in faith.  As soon as I ascended the hill, I saw that indeed it was on the property that is for sale.

A halo of oak leaves

A halo of oak leaves.

  Oak leaves on an old growth oak tree started to sing as I neared grandfather boulder.  I felt the tree was happy I was there.  I know I was.

I noticed that a deer or some other creature scrapped the snow from the boulder and had eaten some of the moss.

Moss on large boulder

Moss on large boulder.

  I wish I had a moss book so I could identify the moss.  Is it too a medicinal?  Animals are smart.  They know what to eat.

Birch bark

Birch bark with peeled bark.

  There was a white birch growing nearby and I rubbed my glove over the bark and applied the powder to  my face.  The powder contains a sunblock equivalent to synthetic sunscreen.

My elder Ojibwe friend Soaring Woman told me, “Let nature teach you.”  Believe me, nature is the best teacher.  I decided to wander back beyond the moraine and see what was out there.  In a flat area I found where the deer had slept last night under the moonlight.  The ground was flattened out.  Oak leaves abounded on the surface and the deer bedded down on them.

The plants changed to goldenrod, river birch, and what looks like some kind of bramble.  Again I won’t know till spring.  There is something calling me to this land.  My father owned a gentleman’s farm in Upper New York State, which I loved.  It was 17 acres.  I can feel my father laughing and I am happy on this land in Wisconsin.  It reminds me of our own family land back east which is long gone to an outsider.  The farm had rolling hills and a wooded forest.  This is 15 acres and somehow it feels very familiar to me. 

I hinted to my husband how I felt about the land and my memories of the farm back east.  As we drove to the cabin he said, “The land is for sale.”  I said yes as I bide him goodbye.  First things first.  I need to talk with a forest man in spring and have him walk the land with me and let me know what he thinks about the standing timber.  It may turn out to be an investment in years to come. 

I am singing the land to me.

Be happy readers where ever you are.

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