I see, touch, feel, hear and know Nature everywhere in my world. There are times I withdraw from her, but she is never far from me. Light guides my eyes when I am awake, birds fill my ears with music. The wind plays tunes that catch my thoughts and soul and fill me with moments of reverie.
I know beauty in a spring rain that patters upon the roof and dribbles down the window panes. The power and strength in a thunderstorm leaves me humble and small. Her art and creativity thread through the carefully patterned colors in the sunsets and sunrises of my days.
Sometimes, I glimpse her activity in a squirrel scurrying up a tree in pursuit of fun or food. She energized the four deer that once floated across the road in my snow-filled headlights. Her quiet strength flows along the rivulets, streams and waterfalls that flow down hillsides. Her majesty and might are all over the Alps, Himalayas, Tetons, Sierras, Catskills and Rocky Mountains.
She glows in the face of a young child as he giggles and laughs with abandon. Nature comes through the Love of my husband caressing my cheek in the soft light of the evening. I see and hear and know the power of Nature’s Love as she speaks through a past president passionately explaining his support and efforts of his international AIDS research and prevention program. I remember the mothering, Loving strength of Nature in the recollections of my mother guiding me through the years of my youth and beyond. These are some of the positive attributes I experience from Nature.
But Nature also has a dark side, relevant to me only as an egotistical human - striving to stay alive. If viewed in a global sense, removing my singleness from the broader picture, this darker side is just...part of the “Natural” scheme of things. Dare I judge it as bad or good from my minuscule view? But as that mere human, I listened in awe, frustration and deep sadness as the television droned for hours describing the horrific tsunami that methodically wiped out thousands of people and other living things around the Indian Ocean in 2004. Humans just watched, and ran and cried…and died.
Nature had her way when the eruption of Mount Vesuvius rolled over Pompeii, stopping every living movement. We were mere pawns as her earthquake left San Francisco in flames and ruin in 1906. She is at the helm of her hurricanes that leave death and destruction along their paths. Her roaring wildfires clear thousands of acres of every form of life.
But above all of these things - and more, Nature prevails. She grows back the life her fires so quickly erase. She recreates movement and growth after her hurricanes, tsunamis and tornadoes as her winds take tiny seeds to ravished ground. Trees and animals and yes, even we humans return to start over. She never ends; she never forgets; she is always in charge in her own knowing and powerful way. That unstoppable, universal, creative Love is evidenced even in humanity’s indomitable will to survive, no matter what the devastation, fear and awesome changes in her wake.
As I move through my days and years, the opportunity for solace and enjoyment and peace are always present and available. Nature is everywhere, everytime, everyplace. A peek outside, the touch of a hand, the sound of the wind; Nature fills my every moment and takes me beautifully through this life I live.
What does Nature mean to you? All comments welcome and responded to.