Rise Before the Sun by A. Klesath

The other morning I rose before the sun and bundled up in snow boots, coat, hat and gloves. I put my dog’s coat on (yes, he wears a coat:) and walked out in the darkness. It had snowed the night before so there was a fresh coat of white powder to light my way. It is a short distance out of town and we proceeded down our path. The sun began rising over the ridge and the clouds had a glorious pink hue. I trudged through the light powder and found pleasure in my investigation of the nightlife, little patterns crossed my path, a bunny rabbit, a dog, little mice prints. A smile crossed my face thinking of all the nights adventures that happened while I slumbered. I walked on further and noticed my dogs ears perk up and he stared attentively into the distance. 200 yards ahead there was movement and we stopped to admire our visitor. Or were we the intruders? He stood there staring at us just as interested in us as we were of him. His tail was his most distinguished feature and as we stood there watching, he walked a short distance further only to stop and turn around to look for us. Yes, we are still here admiring your beauty. His tail moved and he turned again and walked another few feet away. Oh, how gorgeous you are and how grateful I am to partake in your adventure.

You, my friend, are a hated creature that some would love to shoot; yet, I find you immensely beautiful. Your intelligence and ability to survive in a harsh environment only adds to your mystique. The world can be a harsh place where people can misunderstand your intent or underestimate your desire to survive. For you, it seems they fail to understand your very basic need to survive and merely see there own needs; not understanding you are only trying to live in the only way you know how.

Human beings have the capacity to rise up and have unlimited strength and compassion to help someone in need whether they are loved ones or strangers. Yet, at the same time there is the ability to inflict unimaginable cruelty to another human being. How is it that we can go to such extremes? The need to survive is innate in all living creatures and our understanding of this is well known. The two extremes make me realize the balance that is required to survive in a world where there are always two opposing forces.

When I am in nature I feel at peace; the world around me makes sense and I have a calmness that envelopes me. As I sit admiring my new found friend I realize the balance which is required for my survival and the survival of the life all around me. In nature there are predator and prey and in the divine beauty of it there is balance. In a world where there is a demand for civilization; it seems like there is no balance. I have to ponder the definition of civilization and if there is  an ability to find harmony.

The definition of civilization has to do with social development and organization but does that include nature? When we claim to be civilized does that include the balance of nature and the ability to coexist with the earth? Or does this mean we have to destroy nature and create a falsified sense of security?

These questions can wake me from my slumber and create a tightness in my chest that prevents me from sleeping. I struggle to find balance everyday. It is as if my heart and mind conflict. My instinct and knowledge battle with each other and I find myself wondering if I have to choose a side to survive. I find that I have to set my understanding of nature aside to live in civilization. My heart tells me that balance with nature  is crucial. The way the world works, it seems, is an impossible feat when one wants to create balance with nature and civilization. Every day the walls of civilization trample nature forcing this beautiful creature to  move on and persevere. His need to survive in a world that is no longer familiar or friendly forcing him to scavenge and sneak into civilization.

In me there is an epiphanal understanding of my need to find balance under cover of darkness in order to survive. My desire to fight and survive in nature forces me to wake in the middle of the night in a panic. I wake wondering if I will ever discover an understanding of exactly how to find the same peace I find in nature when I am surviving in civilization.

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