Shadowy forms stood quietly at the edge of the road, heads down, grazing on acorns. For a split second the three of us unknowingly shared the same geography and time.
In this moment dusk fell with quiet composure; chilly, damp air invaded in my chest; we knew a common sense of belonging.
A pair of leftover geese squawked overhead like those black squeegie-bulb honkers on a kid’s bike. Dry leaves scurried across the road in the wind.
Suddenly their heads jerked up. The two young deer calculated my presence, then turned and bounded across my yard with their white tails waving in the air.
I held my breath as they gracefully leapt toward the forest. Why did I feel such delight in their presence? The magic of the moment lured me; I wanted to follow them.
It seems nature has a way of speaking to us, especially when we live surrounded by it. We who love the country know we belong there. Fields and forests, birds and bunnies, clear skies and cloudy ones defy explanation. And yet, we are part of it all.
I am an earthly traveler, advancing toward another dimension beyond this one. As I journey onward, I also discover unexpected provisions – my own stashes of acorns. And as years click by and dusk falls in my own life, I peer through the denseness of age and time to see what awaits. Perhaps there is a sign; perhaps there are gentle eyes and white flags and graceful forms leading me to some safe place.
Perhaps the deer enjoyed dinner in my back yard last night to remind me not to worry. Although I cannot know what the future holds, this plot of ground is my current home. I belong here, and yet thankfully my heart also speaks of another sheltered home – an eternal thicket – where I will someday dwell.