Almost two years ago a stray, dumpster-diving cattle dog entered our lives. Her previous life and age remains unknown, but she carries demons, sensitivities and unusual quirks that have engendered deep respect from me and Paul. Lucky is a bright spirit of pluck and courage. She is our emotional barometer, reads minds, knows things…..and now she is on high alert. She bumps her pink wet nose against my knee in affectionate neediness. Trotting in perky athleticism, she herds me and Paul into a protected pack of cohesion and harmony. She has detected our palpable angst as we attempt to grapple with a spreading virus of pandemic proportions in our human population. In the connective web, our four-legged and winged brethren pick up on human fear. Earth continues to spin through the universe with her colorful cargo of plants, minerals and animals, but a vapor of panic is trailing her human passengers.
Outside our window, the equines go about their habitual routines. Stepping into the sharp Spring air to greet the herd, I put my parted lips on a soft nostril to drink in the warm, moist exhale of Traveler’s whale breath. His leathery-sage aroma weaves with the song of a Meadowlark warbling that exceptional melody akin to a babbling brook. Geronimo gives me a soft eye and turns to butt Chief with his fine-boned head. They all rouse in playful jousting and exuberant joie de vivre. Their vibe of business-as-usual expands to encompass my anxiety and I melt into the present moment. Like Lucky, they sense something is amiss and I marvel at their sensitivity. They radiate peace and are content to simply be with their anxious human friend.
We have had several epidemics spread throughout animal populations in Colorado over the past decade. Rabbits contracted Tularemia. Horses: Vesicular Stomatitis. Deer: Chronic Wasting Disease. Crows (and others): West Nile Virus. The virulent spread of infection is a cyclical part of nature. Affected communities hunker down, a new Spring rolls around with her bittersweet freshness that many will not experience and they carry on with their stately duty of being. Battered and bedraggled, they get on with the beautiful business of life with an enviable serenity.
Without constant media updates, one could erroneously believe animals are ignorant of unfolding circumstances. They are not. Without the intellectual pounding of news and statistics, they intuitively know and feel something is out of kilter. We are all united as Earth residents on the wings of a mystery.
Together we weather the storms. From our wild-n-woolly tribe to yours may peace and compassion prevail, always and forever. Blessed Be.