Last child in the wilderness

Thursday, August 26, 2010




My parents have a "wilderness" area behind their house, just like we do. Except of course,  it's much different. Where J and I hike over schist and serpentine and through yellow, strawy native grasses to find the bench and the butterflies, my parents have a boggy marsh, rabbits, tall trees.


Early the other morning J and I went and sat in my parent's wilderness for a while. He said, after a few minutes, "Birds too loud, it's too loud". Of course I had been thinking of the stillness of everything, but he was right. After a few seconds of listening I could hear at least 6 birds and 3 bugs... and that was with my city-girl ears. 


I heard Terry Tempest Williams on To the Best of our Knowledge talk about doing an observation of Prairie Dogs-- for the first 30 minutes, she said, nothing  happened. She thought she'd die of boredom. Then, suddenly, she saw a whole world whirling in motion.  I suppose this is like clouds moving, or the tides changing.

I couldn't tell J who or what the birds were, or answer him when he asked why they were talking. And I am not sure how to learn these things-- it seems like something that should be handed down through the generations, but I grew up in a city, too.

1 comment:

Amber said...

Ugh this is so my kid. Have you read "I love Dirt"yet?It has some good ideas/activities for getting past this stage/stuff