Thursday, June 16, 2011

Life in the City

Tonight there was the gift of a walk at Seward Park -- a glorious 300-acre city-forest occupying a peninsula on Lake Washington, a half mile from my house.

My friend C. and I traversed the temperate rainforest of the interior, on the lookout for baby owls. We spotted three juveniles, who keened and swooped about our heads, doing that extraordinary head-rotation-thing while perched, fluffing their baby feathers.

Periodically, a pileated woodpecker struck its beak against a tall snag, the sound resonating deeply and melodically in the hollow trunk. Crows harassed an eagle above the treetops.

The air smelled green -- can something contain the scent of a color?

Our path twisted and curved through glens of ferns, on boardwalks above marshes, through a grove of old-growth firs -- everything thickly draped in moss.

It's been at least four years since I walked these woods, and I felt as if I had come home, home to an enchantment that's been locked in a keyless closet for far too long.

I am the key.
The closet is this life.
The door is open.


  1. Here the air often LOOKS and SMELLS green. I know exactly what you mean.

    Our owls are much more secretive!

  2. Sounds wonderful...thanks for sharing your walk with us.

  3. lovely to read this, T. so affirming; for those of us who have been sharing your story, this feels like the beginning of a long sigh of relief... you're going to be just fine.

  4. Oh T! Wonderful post! Sounds like you are yourself again!!!

  5. As we packed up the house in Florida a couple of weeks ago a couple of pileated woodpeckers kept banging their beaks against the front door...the same night I dreamed a large while owl came and sat on my head while I slept...strange stuff this animal imagery...