Day 11 – Going home

It is early morning, again. Our final day in Canada. We will be making the long drive home after breakfast.

I have risen early to return to the lakeside for one last sit with the water. The morning fog is rolling, softly, lightly. The water- a virtual baby’s nursery of pinks and lavenders and blues, with a thin ribbon of gold. Of course, the russets and tangerines of the far hillsides reflect in near perfect symmetry.


Balance. Above and below. Inner and outer. Solitude and relationship. Stillness and action.

I have read that Moose represents power and balance. Something I know in my body when I carry the canoe ( my fellow canoe-portager mentioned to me yesterday that he sometimes imagines himself to be a moose when carrying his canoe, like a rack of antlers, atop his shoulders, making his way through the brush). The moose is able to move quickly and also to be utterly still, to maneuver in both water and land. She is gentle and strong, swift and silent, awkward and graceful.

She is also a totem that is associated with feminine power, birthing (of self) awakened through water (the womb of all life). There are some tribes in Maine and Newfoundland who have a legend that the Moose returns to the sea when hunted persistently, becomes a great whale. Hmm.. she goes underwater to survive for a time. Moose also knows how to plunge into those depths to draw nourishment. Soul-retrieval is the message for me here. Yes.

A lone bird flies overhead, I follow its path until it disappears into the dark background of those hills. A seagull squawks, songbirds twitter in the shrubbery close by.

The sounds of rumbling traffic from the roadway nearby disrupt the quiet. Perhaps they are logging trucks. I suppose I understand the need for wood, for man-aged forests, but after a week and a half such as this, I wonder, even more than before, how much do we need? What is truly necessary? We have made life so complicated, so full in so many ways. Life is also full here, without things. It is full because it is close, because it is intimate, because it is connected to place, to companion. Undistracted by things, it flows deeper somehow.

A few dogs bark at a cottage down the lakeshore. The smell of sizzling bacon wafts from the lodge kitchen. A duck flaps by, low to the water, its wings occasionally tapping the water for a few beats, creating a ripple, or three.

The ridge to my right is brightening, catching the light of the rising sun, which must be to my left, over my shoulder. This is the only way I can orient myself anymore. Can I take this sense of re-orientation home with me? Can I be like the plucked flower in the vase on the table of civilization, unrooted, and still bloom?

How to root myself there. This is what I must re-discover at home, a way to rise like this each morning, to connect and draw nurture from the soil and the water and the sun of my homeland. To plant myself deeply, so that I may also blossom there. Can I grow intimate with that place, know myself in that place, enliven myself there?

Yes. The sun is definitely rising over my left shoulder. A halo is rimming that ridge. The golden swath has spread, illuminating the fog.

The traffic is louder now. It must be folks going to ‘work’. What is my work? What is our work? In this place

What shall I do with my one wild and precious life? What does it mean that the earth is so beautiful? What is the life I should live?*

There IS a loon on this lake. We had thought perhaps not, but there she is, making her way, even here -with the cottages, the ATV’s, the bacon, the traffic – being wild, fishing for breakfast.

Some other guests have arrived with their chairs, to sit on the bank above and behind me, to take in the nourishment of water, like me. Their soft conversation mixes with quiet laughter and yawns. My friends have probably risen as well, back in the cabin, but the light keeps playing with this water….

1 Comment (+add yours?)

  1. Patricia Steely
    Oct 13, 2014 @ 15:25:23

    Hi Vicki- Welcome Home! (Not only welcome back to PA, but welcome back to writing!)

    It is wonderful to see you are writing again! I enjoyed reading your Reflections and seeing your pictures. Thanks for sharing.

    Blessings- Pat



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