Oh, wild things, come.
Put me inside of your heart, lay
me at the altar of your mind.
Beloveds, enjoy these photos I took during my wonderful day off spent at the Naples Zoo. I find myself contemplating the meaning of freedom. My own and yours. What we make of each other’s freedom and if we really respect it, or if we truly understand what it means. I know that I endure the challenges of life to try, in my own small ways, to get closer to Love, to walk more in Truth than in illusions, and many times I fail although that does not keep me from trying again on another day.
This morning I finally had to give up my last shred of fantasy regarding the expectation that one day my life was all going to work out and there wouldn’t be anymore fears and doubts and heartaches. I am just this little thing with a wild spirit, and I love nature because I see myself in it. I see something that looks like what I feel inside, which is free, and so much of what we’ve made of the world captures that freedom or tries to destroy it or put it in a pen and sell it.
I had such high expectations of this blog, but I find, after tinkering away with the unright words for almost eight hours, that all I can tell you is that I sit alone this morning with one new truth: I am a wild thing, a wonderful, wild thing, and I am meant to be with other wild things, including you, beloved. For the moment, this information is critical to where I go from here.
Kudos to the Naples Zoo for being kind to its animals. I had a marvelous afternoon there, and one in which I was in desperate straits as I struggle with the ups and downs of my spectacular, confusing, weird, funny, satisfying and bumbling existence. Just the day with these lovely creatures righted my faltering vessel. What a bizarre and mysterious thing is this life. Do you not find that to be so?
The title of this blog refers to a story folks tell about St. Francis of Assisi, who, while struggling mightily with his relationship with God, implores the almond tree: “Speak to me of God!”
To which, the almond tree does. By bursting into bloom.
I feel this way about life, about my similar spiritual struggles and attempts to see another side of existence outside of the world of man. In my own ways, I have done the same thing as St. Francis, beloved patron saint of animals and the environment. Nothing so fantastical has happened to me, but slowly, over the years, my eyes have changed. When I ask, the almond tree blooms. Only it shows up as young alligators in a small pond, as Michael folding me up in his arms as I cry because I am so afraid to be married again and we just do what we can day to day, as a tiger’s eye, as a phone call from my friend Valerie in Kentucky, as a trio of swallow-tailed kites above the mangrove forest, as a moment during writing when I realize that I’m just a little wild thing in love with the Everglades, and Michael, and freedom–yours and mine.